Novak Djokovic savagely roasted on billboard at Australian Open

A billboard near Melbourne Park, pictured here taking a cheeky jab at Novak Djokovic.
A billboard near Melbourne Park took a cheeky jab at Novak Djokovic. Image: Getty/Twitter

Novak Djokovic may have left Australia, but we certainly haven't forgotten about him.

The World No.1 tennis star was deported from the country on Sunday night after unsuccessfully appealing the cancellation of his visa.

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However the saga is still very much at the forefront of the narrative at the Australian Open, with players continuing to field questions about Djokovic.

And in the latest twist, a billboard near Melbourne Park took a cheeky dig at the Serbian star on Tuesday.

One of the annual Australian Lamb ads made mention of Djokovic in a billboard on a truck not too far from where the Australian Open is taking place.

“Everyone’s welcome at our BBQ. Not Djoking," the sign for the Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) ad reads.

MLA says the ads are all about sharing.

“Building on the ‘Share the Lamb’ brand platform, the 6-week integrated campaign reflects upon how Australia has become isolated from the rest of the world due to strict international border closures during the pandemic,” the MLA website says.

Spain's message to Novak Djokovic to get vaccinated

The World No.1 has been laying low in Belgrade, recuperating after his long flight from Australia and previous detention.

He had been deported after his attempt to defend his Australian Open title fell foul of border regulations denying entry to unvaccinated people.

His status as the world's most famous unvaccinated athlete continued to provoke discussion with Spanish government spokesperson Isabel Rodriguez asked on Tuesday whether he would be allowed to compete in Spain.

"What Mr Djokovic has to do is get vaccinated, that would be the most sensible thing to do," she said.

"Leading by example is important and this is indeed what our country's great sportsmen and women do. For example, Mr Nadal," she added, referring to one of Djokovic's great rivals with whom he is tied on 20 major titles.

Novak Djokovic, pictured here after landing in Belgrade following his deportation from Australia.
Novak Djokovic looks on after landing in Belgrade following his deportation from Australia. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

Even though vaccination is not mandatory in Spain, the vaccination rate is one of the highest in Europe.

Djokovic travels regularly to Spain where he owns a house in the southern resort of Marbella.

He spent a few days there in late December and early January and video footage showed him training there.

While the Spanish government may regard it as desirable for Djokovic to be vaccinated, under current entry guidelines he would be likely to be allowed to compete in events such as late April's ATP Masters 100 tournament in Madrid.

As a non-European Union citizen he would not automatically be allowed to enter if not vaccinated.

But an exemption is granted to 'highly qualified workers whose work is necessary and cannot be postponed or carried out remotely, including participants in high-level sports events that take place in Spain'.

with AAP

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