Novak Djokovic has admitted that he made an ‘error of judgement’ in attending a photoshoot after testing positive for COVID-19.
The unvaccinated Australian Open champion controversially saw his visa to compete in this month’s Grand Slam tournament reinstated after proof of a positive PCR test on December 16.
However, photos have since emerged of Djokovic attending a children’s event and taking part in an interview with L’Equipe, and the Serbian has now taken to social media to correct the “misinformation” while acknowledging his errors.
“I want to address the continuing misinformation about my activities and attendance at events in the lead up to my positive PCR COVID test result,” Djokovic wrote on Instagram.
“Despite having no Covid symptoms, I took a rapid antigen test on December 16 which was negative, and out of an abundance of caution, also took an official and approved PCR test on that same day. I was asymptomatic and felt good, and I had not received the notification of a positive PCR test until after that event.
“The next day, on December 18, I was at my tennis centre in Belgrade to fulfil a long-standing commitment for a L’Equipe interview and photoshoot. I cancelled all other events except for the L’Equipe interview.
“I felt obliged to go ahead and conduct the L’Equipe interview as I didn’t want to let the journalist down. I socially distanced and wore a mask except when my photograph was being taken.
“While I went home after the interview to isolate for the required period, on reflection, this was an error of judgement and I accept that I should have rescheduled this commitment.
“On the issues of my travel declaration, this was submitted by my support team on my behalf – as I told immigration officials on my arrival – and my agent sincerely apologises for the administrative mistake in ticking the incorrect box about my previous travel before coming to Australia.
“This was a human error and certainly not deliberate. We are living in challenging times in a global pandemic and sometimes these mistakes can occur.”
Djokovic is aiming to win a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam title at the 2022 Australian Open, although Immigration Minister Alex Hawke still possesses the power to cancel the 34-year-old’s visa.