Novak Djokovic’s father poses with fan wearing pro-Russia ‘Z’ symbol at the Australian Open


The Australian Open told CNN that after a video was released Wednesday of Novak Djokovic’s father, Serjan, holding a Russian flag during a rally with fans, it told players and those around them about “flag policies and “Symbols” “explained and reminded”. He declared his support for Russia.

In a video posted on YouTube by a well-known supporter of Vladimir Putin, the father of the Serbian player can be seen posing with a fan outside Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena. The man is wearing a Z on his shirt with a Russian flag with Putin’s face on it. “Long live Russia,” he says.

The “Z” symbol is seen as a sign of support for Russia, including Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. This symbol has been seen on Russian equipment and clothing in Ukraine.

“Players and their teams have been informed and reminded of the event’s policy on flags and symbols and to avoid any situation that has the potential to cause disruption,” an Australian Open spokesperson told CNN on Thursday.

We continue to work closely with security and law enforcement agencies.”

An Australian Open spokesman continued: “A small group of people displayed inappropriate flags and symbols and threatened and ejected security guards following Wednesday night’s match. A patron is currently assisting the police on unrelated matters.

In a statement Friday criticizing his actions but not apologizing, Serjan Djokovic said he was in Melbourne “only to support my son” and had “no intention of causing such headlines or disruption.”

I was outside with Novak fans, as I do after all my son’s matches, to celebrate his wins and take pictures with them. “I did not intend to get involved in this matter.”

My family has lived through the horrors of war and we only wish for peace.

He added that he will watch his son’s semi-final against American star Tommy Paul from home on Friday “so there is no disruption for my son or the other player.”

Novak Djokovic will not comment on the situation, his management told CNN.

Earlier on Friday, Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia asked the player to state his position on the fight, saying the incident with his father was a “provocative” and “shine a negative light on Novak himself as he prepares for his semi-final it shines.” ”

“I think it’s important for him to make a strong statement about his position on this war, to refute the speculation, and I want him to apologize to Novak Djokovic,” Ukrainian Ambassador Vasyl Miroshnichenko told CNN.

“Of course, the son cannot be responsible for his father’s sins, but maybe it is his father’s opinion. I think the world should know where he stands.”

Tennis Australia has confirmed that four players were expelled from the tournament on Wednesday for displaying pro-war images.

According to the rules of the Australian Open, the flags of Russia and Belarus are prohibited from participating in these tournaments.

Tennis Australia has a “neutral flag” policy and has reaffirmed that policy amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.


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