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A mask, if you're going to be anywhere near Djokovic: Fan's advice to Leylah Fernandez

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Melbourne, Jan 12 (IANS) Young Canadian tennis player Leylah Fernandez’s post on social media on what she should wear on-court during her Australian Open campaign here has gone viral, with thousands of fans giving her suggestions ranging from donning a “white outfit” to wearing a mask whenever in Novak Djokovic’s proximity.

World No. 1 and defending champion Djokovic’s arrival in Melbourne from Serbia for the opening Grand Slam of the year has created a controversy as he has secured a “medical exemption” from Tennis Australia (TA) to compete in the tournament. The nine-time Australian Open champion has refused to disclose his COVID-19 vaccination status, saying it’s a private matter.

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On Wednesday, two day after winning a legal battle in Australian courts, Djokovic was in the midst of another controversy as he reportedly attended a children’s function back home in Belgrade and gave an interview to L’Equipe after testing COVID-positive.

His visa agent also committed an “administrative mistake in ticking the incorrect box” and there is a discrepancy on when exactly he tested COVID-positive. While the documents reportedly submitted by Djokovic to the Australian authorities suggest the COVID-19 test was taken on December 26, reports say he was positive before his interview to L’Equipe on December 18.

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On Wednesday, when Leylah Fernandez, the US Open finalist in 2021 tweeted that, “I’m so excited to announce that I’ll be training, playing, and living in @lululemon from here on out. What should I wear at the @AustralianOpen?”, the 19-year-old, who lost to Emma Raducanu in the US Open final, got a mix of replies, with some fans asking her to maintain a distance from Djokovic.

“A mask, if you’re going to be anywhere near Djokovic,” suggested a fan, while another tweeted, “Cause he (Djokovic) is the only one in the world who can transmit the virus, right? Thought you came up with a banger, did you?”

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On a serious note, a fan suggested that she should wear something which gave her confidence. “Wear what gives you confidence by making you feel empowered as a player or one of Venus Williams outfit line of sports wear,” wrote a fan, while another said, “That white otutfit looks SOO AMAZINGLY GOOD! But probably better for Wimbledon. Maybe a Red one for #AusOpen to complement the blue tone of the court? Congrats Leylah and @lululemon!!”

–IANS

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