‘I hated the exemption he got’ – Top coach happy with decision to deport Novak Djokovic

Top coach Darren Cahill believes Novak Djokovic should never have got a medical exemption in the first place for Australia due to his views on vaccination.

Djokovic was initially refused entry to Australia despite being granted a medical exemption to dodge the vaccine requirement due to a recent Covid-19 infection.

After a week of speculation and battles with the government in the courts, Djokovic was eventually deported mere hours before the Australian Open began.

Cahill, who coached Simona Halep among others, has described the situation as ‘a mess,’ but one that started with a medical exemption that should never have been awarded.

“I hated the exemption that he had, because I think that exemption is really for people that wish to get vaccinated and they can’t get vaccinated because they’ve contracted Covid — and you have to wait three or six months, and then you get vaccinated,” Cahill told Channel Nine.

“Novak never wanted to get vaccinated, so I hated that particular exemption.

“If you have an acute medical illness or something that holds you back from getting it, no problem, but I didn’t like the whole thing from the start.

“It was a mess from the start and then it just got worse and worse.

“I think a lot of responsibility sits with the Tennis Australia board. I would hate to see (TA CEO) Craig Tiley have it all lumped on his shoulders.”

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Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.