Djokovic Says He Tested Positive To COVID On A Date That Contradicts His Sworn Affidavit

If found to have lied on his affidavit, Djokovic could be charged with perjury.

novak djokovic

Want more Junkee in your life? Sign up to our newsletter, and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook so you always know where to find us.

World tennis number one Novak Djokovic has admitted he knowingly attended a magazine interview while positive and infectious with COVID-19, but his new statement directly contradicts his sworn affidavit.

In a lengthy statement on Instagram, Djokovic explained that he took a test after being exposed to COVID at a basketball game in Belgrade on December 14. He had no symptoms but underwent a PCR test as a precaution on December 16.

“The next day [December 17] I attended a tennis event in Belgrade to present awards to children and took a rapid antigen test before going to the event, and it was negative,” he wrote. “I was asymptomatic and felt good, and I had not received the notification of a positive PCR test result until after that event.

“The next day, on 18 December I was at my tennis centre in Belgrade to fulfil a long-standing commitment for a L’Equipe interview and photoshoot. I cancelled all other events except for the L’Equipe interview.

“I felt obliged to go ahead and conduct the L’Equipe interview as I didn’t want to let the journalist down, but did ensure I socially distanced and wore a mask except when my photograph was being taken,” he wrote.

It is unclear from Djokovic’s statement whether or not the journalist who conducted the interview was aware of his positive COVID diagnosis prior to the interview.

“While I went home after the interview to isolate for the required period, on reflection, this was an error of judgement and I accept that I should have rescheduled this commitment,” Djokovic concluded before going on to discuss other issues with his visa.

Djokovic’s statement is in direct contradiction to his sworn affidavit, which reads as follows:

“On 16 December 2021, I was tested and diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 (COVID). Annexed hereto and marked ND-2’ is a true copy of my COVID-PCR test result issued by the Institute of Public Health of Serbia showing a positive COVID result dated 16 December 2021.”

If we’re taking Djokovic’s sworn affidavit as the truth, this would imply the tennis star knew he was positive prior to attending both the award ceremony and the L’Equipe interview.

Djokovic’s statement comes just hours after former world number one Andy Murray asserted that there are “a few questions to be answered” regarding Djokovic’s movements after testing positive to COVID-19.

“We do want the best players there but I think there are a few questions to be answered. Until that happens, it’s tough to give a definitive opinion,” he said in an interview following his win at the Sydney Tennis Classic on Tuesday night.