Djokovic hopeful of Aus Open return under Albo

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Djokovic eased to a 6-3 6-3 6-2 victory over Aljaz Bedene at the French Open on Saturday (AEST) to set up a Round of 16 clash with Diego Schwartzman.

The world No.1 remains on course to meet record 21-time grand slam winner Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals at Roland Garros, in what is the Serbian's first Major of the year.

Djokovic was banned from playing at the Australian Open in Melbourne and was deported from the country because of his unvaccinated COVID-19 status in January.

The 34-year-old cannot be granted another visa for three years because of Australia's immigration laws, but former Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison previously suggested he could be allowed entry sooner under the "right circumstances".

Djokovic hopes the arrival of new Australia Prime Minister Anthony Albanese will boost his visa-related hopes of featuring in Melbourne at the start of 2023.

"In terms of the government, yes, I heard the news, but, I mean, I don't know anything about whether my visa is going to be reinstated or whether I'm going to be allowed to come back to Australia," he said.

"I would like to. I would like to go there and play Australian Open. I don't hold any grudges. Look, you know, it was what it was.

"If I have an opportunity to go back to Australia and play a place where I made the biggest success in my career in Grand Slams, I would love to come back."

As for the next clash with Schwartzman as Djokovic aims to equal Nadal's 21 grand slams, the Serbian is expecting a tough test in Paris.

"Well, he's one of the quickest players we have on tour, and his best results in his career came on clay, so of course he's a tough opponent without a doubt," he added.

"I know him well. We played some really good matches on different surfaces. So playing against him, you always have to expect another ball coming back. I'm ready for the physical battle.

"I haven't spent too much time on the court. I have been striking the ball really well, so I look forward to that challenge."


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