MELBOURNE, Australia – It was Novak Djokovic’s third visit to Rod Laver Arena since he was sprung from immigration detention Monday night by a successful appeal on technicalities, concerning the revocation of his visa.
But it was the first time it wasn’t behind closed doors, with all theunnecessary secrecy and subterfuge that came with it.
However, even across the complex, the camera feed from Rod Laver Arena (which had been turned off Tuesday as Djokovic took to the court) was showing players training in … John Cain Arena.
There was a news helicopter hovering around Rod Laver Arena as some 30 photographers, videographers and a few print journalists headed inside Rod Laver Arena for a glimpse of the man who has been making all the headlines for the last week.
Here’s what it all looked like.
At Home on Rod Laver Arena
Rod Laver Arena is the scene of nine of Djokovic’s Grand Slam victories. It’s home. And while his off-court drama seems to still be mid-drama, he is on the court, and practicing with the expectation that he might be able to play in Melbourne, and vie for his 21st career Grand Slam title.
As was the case Tuesday, Djokovic did not hit with another top player. Rather, he was there with another young Aussie. This time, it was 20-year-old Tristan Schoolkate, who lost in the qualifying the previous day and (ironically enough) was wearing camo.
Same old Djokovic
It’s not as though you would expect him to look somehow … changed by his experiences of the last week. Which are not over.
But beyond perhaps having less of a suntan that he normally would have by Jan. 12 Down Under, he looked like … Novak Djokovic.
Cameras clicked and video cameras whirred and the helicopter hovered overhead. But Djokovic was back at work.
Instagram post reveals little
In the wake of the evidence on released documents from Djokovic’s appeal hearing, he (or what sounds more like his lawyer) addressed a few issues with an Instagram post that coincidentally landed shortly before he took to the court to practice.
We’ll leave it to you to make your own judgments.
Everyone has their own opinion. At this point it’s all just exhausting. And from what we can determine, a long way from over.