ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Novak Djokovic lost his doubles match but received a warm welcome from the crowd at the Adelaide International on Monday.
The 21-time major winner was deported from Australia a year ago after arriving unvaccinated against COVID-19 at a time when the country was still subject to strict quarantine regulations and proof of vaccination.
His first match was a low-key doubles encounter alongside Vasek Pospisil, and the pair lost 4-6, 6-3, (10-5) to Tomislav Brkic and Gonzalo Escobar.
Questions about how he would be received were quickly answered when Djokovic's supporters flocked to the stadium to welcome him back.
Djokovic begins his singles campaign on Tuesday against Constant Lestienne as he builds up to the Australian Open, where he is looking for a record-extending 10th title.