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Djokovic set for return to action in Dubai after missing Australian Open

Novak Djokovic is set to make a return to the tennis court in Dubai next month, after missing out on the ongoing Australian Open.

34-year-old Novak Djokovic will be back in action on the tennis court in Dubai after being deported from Australia, forcing him to miss the Australian Open.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner was deported after losing a court bid to overturn his visa cancellation.

He has now been placed on the entry list for the Dubai ATP Tour event, which begins on February 21.

Entrants to Dubai, where the Serb is a five-time winner, do not need to be vaccinated against Covid-19.

Organisers of the ATP 500 Dubai Tennis Championships said the Serb was entered for the tournament.

"We are delighted to see Novak back in Dubai for the 12th time when he will be seeking his sixth title and we wish him the best of luck,"

said Colm McLoughlin, chief executive of Dubai Duty Free.

Djokovic's official website also confirmed his participation in the Dubai tournament.

Tennis Australia said it "deeply regrets" the impact Djokovic's deportation saga had on players at the Australian Open, as the focus on the 2021 champion's fate overshadowed the build-up to this year's tournament.

Djokovic was initially granted a medical exemption to enter Australia by two independent health panels after testing positive for coronavirus in mid-December, however the Australian Border Force detained him for not meeting federal Covid requirements.

Djokovic won the most recent of his five Dubai titles in 2020. (BBC sport)

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