Boris Becker explains what Novak Djokovic told him as Australian Open drama rumbles on

Novak Djokovic 'won't win Australian Open' says Bowers

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Novak Djokovic is in better spirits but shell-shocked from what’s happened ahead of the Australian Open, Boris Becker has revealed. The Serb was given the green light to play in the competition on Monday, having previously been forced to quarantine upon arriving Down Under. However, there’s still a chance he won’t be allowed to play at the Rod Laver Arena.

Djokovic is currently training ahead of the Australian Open after a judge ruled he’d be able to play.

It’s been a turbulent week for the world No 1, who was forced to quarantine in what his camp described as ‘inhumane’ conditions after his medical exemption was deemed invalid and he had his visa revoked.

Djokovic previously worked with Becker between 2013 and 2016 and the former Wimbledon champion, speaking to the BBC, has now revealed what the Serb told him during a private phone call.

“I spoke to him yesterday briefly and I congratulated him and he thanked me for my support,” said Becker.

“But obviously he’s still shell-shocked about the last six days.

“He’s a remarkable young man, his spirits are better. He went to train at midnight, that’s just who he is.

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“He’s a different cat. He sees the world with a different pair of eyes.

“You may not agree with everything he does but you have to respect him and obviously his preparation is beyond bad, I don’t think he’s ever been in a worse position entering the week before a Grand Slam but that’s just the way it is.”

Becker also opened up on how Australian Open fans could treat Djokovic.

There are fears that some will attend matches to vent their fury at the 34-year-old, who isn’t vaccinated, with Australian Open chiefs said to be on ‘red alert’ and concerned over possible crowd violence.

But Becker insists Djokovic will have no problems coping with that pressure, adding: “I’m sure there are going to be a couple of boos and whistles but again, he’s used to that.

“He was never everybody’s darling.

“He was always a street-fighter, he had to fight the odds, he had to win over the crowd and I thought it was fascinating at the final of the US Open when they finally embrace him and he couldn’t handle that either.

“He started crying in the changing rooms because he was filled with too many emotions.

“Again, the crowd will be difficult with him but with each match he’s starting to win the crowd will embrace him again but it’s going to be a difficult first week.”

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, meanwhile, Djokovic’s family opened up on the events of the last week.

Djokovic’s mother, Dijana, believes her son has been brutally treated by officials in Australia.

“He has done nothing wrong, he was subjected to torture, harassment,” she said at a press conference.

“Never before have we faced a situation like this. This was extremely difficult for us.

“We had no idea whether he was ill or whether he had eaten.

“Justice has prevailed today. This is the biggest win of his career. It is bigger than any of the grand slams he has won.”

His father, Srdjan, added: “Over the past few days, it’s been very, very difficult for everyone in the world who is free thinking. But he is mentally extremely, extremely strong.

“They took away all his rights his rights, as a human being. He refused to revoke his visa.

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“They gave him no right to prepare his defence for several hours, and they took away his phone.

“Fortunately they gave him back his phone. He contacted his legal team who mounted a fantastic defence, that they could not match.

“This is a huge win for Novak, his family and the free world. He respected everything that was asked of him. He only wanted to go there to play tennis and that right he wanted to take away from them.

“Justice and the rule of law have prevailed. The judge who presided over the case has shown that not for second was Novak the guilty party.

“The judge was fantastic, he simply respected the facts. He took the only decision that was possible which was to release Novak.”

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