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Djokovic blocked in Australia

Djokovic, blocked in Australia because he does not comply with anti-Covid regulations, is being held in a facility used by the Melbourne government to detain "irregular" people on the national territory.

Adnan Choopani spent the past two months detained in Melbourne’s rundown Park Hotel, and now Adnan Choopani has a famous new neighbor — tennis star Novak Djokovic.

“I couldn’t believe that Djokovic is here,” Choopani, 24, told NBC News in a Friday video call from his room in the makeshift immigration detention center, which is home to 36 asylum seekers.

“I hope he shares what he’s seen,” he said, adding that the locked windows, lack of fresh air and poor food were taking a mental toll on him and other residents.

20-time grand slam winner moved into a room on the floor below Choopani last week after Australian border officials canceled his visa, for failing to provide appropriate evidence to meet entry requirements.

The country’s Covid-19 rules stipulate that incoming travelers must have had two shots of an approved vaccine, or must have an exemption with a genuine medical reason to avoid quarantine.

of a court hearing on Monday, the Serbian tennis star’s lawyers argued that he had been granted an exemption due to contracting — and recovering from — the virus in December, in papers filed with the Federal Circuit and Family Court of Australia.

As he waits for his case to be heard, Djokovic has been confined to the Park Hotel, a gray five-story immigration detention center in an inner city suburb of Melbourne — a little more than 2 miles from the luxurious city hotels where most of the other players competing in the Australian Open tennis tournament are staying.

His mother, Dijana, was less than impressed, telling reporters at her family’s restaurant in Belgrade last week that it was “dirty” and infested with bugs. She also criticized the food.

This was echoed by Choopani, who called the hotel’s food “disgusting.” He said that on a number of occasions he had found maggots in some of the food and was given moldy bread to eat.