Jelena Dokic shares 'sad' news as Australian Open commentary role thrown into doubt

The popular Australian Open commentator shared some brutal news to her fans.

Jelena Dokic smiles during commentary.
Aussie commentator Jelena Dokic (pictured) has headed home to Melbourne after falling ill at the Adelaide International. (Images: Instagram)

Aussie commentator Jelena Dokic will miss her commentary role at the Adelaide International and will head home after falling ill ahead of the Australian Open. Dokic was a former World No.4 for Australia and has been a regular on Channel 9 at the Australian Open in recent years.

The popular analyst has already featured at the United Cup and the Brisbane International this year and was currently working at the Adelaide International. Dokic was expected to appear at a book signing for her new book 'Fearless' on Saturday, but the 40-year-old rushed home to Melbourne after falling ill while commentating at the latest event.

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Dokic took to social media and explained the decision to also cancel her book signing as she looks to recover ahead of the first grand slam of the year. "Sorry Adelaide. I have come down with a viral infection and I am out of commentating the Adelaide International this week but also I apologise to all my supporters in Adelaide because we had a book signing on Saturday," she wrote on Instagram. "I am deeply sorry, as I have to get home to Melbourne asap. I promise I will be back. Thank you all for the support."

Dokic admitted she was 'sad' to be leaving the tournament, but wasn't feeling well enough to commentate. "I am so sad and disappointed as I absolutely love Adelaide and this amazing tournament but I have no choice," she wrote in an earlier post. "Off to Melbourne now and hopefully I will be OK soon."

The Australian Open starts on January 14, meaning Dokic could miss some - or all - of the tournament as she recovers. It would be a crushing blow for tennis fans, however Dokic said she was hoping to be ready for the tournament's start.

Fans jumped on social media to wish Dokic a speedy recovery, with many hoping they will be able to hear her analytical commentary during the home grand slam. "Take care of yourself Jelena," one fan wrote. Another added: "Take care and I hope you are feeling better soon."

Dokic's new book 'Fearless' is a recount about how she was able to reach out for help after struggling with an eating disorder in recent years. The book details how Dokic has bounced back from heartache and trauma to to establish herself as a leading commentator and motivational speaker.

Jelena Dokic speaks out over mental health battle

Last year, Dokic lifted the lid on an eating disorder she suffered from a young age and the breakdown of her long-term relationship. Dokic revealed that she almost took her own life in 2022 and was courageous when she called out online trolls after being targeted by body-shamers. The much-loved tennis commentator has been widely praised for having the courage to talk about her traumatic past and well-documented battles with mental health and depression that she spoke about in detail in her book 'Unbreakable'.

Following the resounding success of that autobiography, Dokic has a new book titled: 'Fearless: Finding The Power To Thrive'. In an interview with Stellar published last year, the 40-year-old admitted that writing the book helped her better understand and speak about eating disorders she suffered as far back as her refugee days in Serbia as a child.

Jelena Dokic talks to a player.
Jelena Dokic (pictured) has travelled home after falling ill at the Adelaide International. (Photo by MARTIN KEEP/AFP via Getty Images)

“I actually haven’t talked about my eating disorder [before] because, for so long, I didn’t understand it," she told Stellar. "But now I know that more than 90 per cent of people that do have eating disorders, it comes from trauma."

Dokic admitted that her eating disorder was a "complex" issue that she's still "working really hard on" but says seeking professional help ultimately "saved my life". She admitted the new book helped give her a fresh perspective on her battles.

Readers seeking support and information can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

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