Novak Djokovic’s family defended the tennis superstar as he fights the Australian government in order to play at the Australian Open later this month.
Djokovic was being held at a Melbourne hotel as his case to play in the Australian Open hangs in the balance. His case was adjourned until Monday. Djokovic’s mother, Dijana, lashed out against the Australian government in a news conference on Thursday.
“I feel terrible since yesterday, the last 24 hours. They are keeping him like a prisoner. It’s just not fair. It’s not human. I just hope he will be strong as we are trying also to be very strong to give him some energy to keep on going. I hope that he will win,” Dijana Djokovic said, via Reuters.
Djokovic was holed up at a hotel where Australian immigration officials also place refugees and asylum seekers.
“It’s just some small immigration hotel, if we can call it a hotel at all. Some bugs, it’s dirty, and the food is so terrible,” Dijana Djokovic added.
The tennis star’s father, Srdjan Djokovic, said the issue had “nothing to do with sports” and added that Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was trying to attack the Serbian people.
“They’re keeping him in captivity. They’re stomping all over Novak to stomp all over Serbia and Serbian people,” Srdjan Djokovic said. “Morrison and his like have dared attack Novak to bring Serbia to its knees. Serbia has always shown that he comes from a proud nation.