The Australian Open has suffered yet another ugly flag scandal with an apparent supporter of Novak Djokovic waving a controversial far-right symbol during the final.
Twitter user Sophie Mak spotlighted a fan holding up a Chetnik flag in a mass of Serbian supporters, shown on the TV broadcast, as Djokovic faced Stefanos Tsitsipas on Sunday night.
“Why am I seeing a Chetnik flag amongst the Serbian crowd at the Tsitsipas vs Djokovic match? Are ultra fascist symbols allowed in the Australian Open now?” she asked.
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The Chetniks were paramilitary ultranationalists who committed war crimes during World War II and are still widely considered a far-right group.
In 2020, Djokovic controversially posed for a photo holding a bottle featuring a picture of Draža Mihailović, a leader of the Serbian Chetnik movement, who after World War II was convicted of war crimes and then executed.
Long-time tennis writer Ben Rothenberg called for future Australian Opens to ban flags if security cannot limit incidents like these.
“Tournament security has been pretty abysmal (though we haven’t had the ~annual court invader during the men’s final yet),” he added.
Tennis Australia had to enforce a blanket ban on Russian and Belarusian flags early in the tournament after one of the former was waved during a Ukrainian’s match.
Djokovic’s father Srbjan was then caught up in a controversy when he posed alongside pro-Vladimir Putin protesters who were holding up a flag with the Ru
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