COMMENT: Novak Djokovic is a brilliant player but it’s time he packed his bags, apologised to the Australian people for ignoring their vaccination rules and leave the country with what remains of his dignity.

THEY are known as tennis’ first couple. Matteo Berrettini and Ajla Tomljanovic have been a lover match for some time and on the eve of the Australian Open they mixed a bit of business with pleasure, practising together in preparation of their first-round matches.

No. 7 seed Berrettini faces 20-year-old American Brandon Nakashima, in what observers say could be an upset.

Aussie Tomljanovic, at No. 43, is the second highest-ranked Australian behind World No. 1 Ash Barty. She faces Spain’s in-form Paul Badosa.

AUSSIE wheelchair champion Dylan Alcott was the perfect face to launch the Australian Open 2022 commemorative coin, featuring Margaret Molesworth, who won that first wounds title 100 years ago.

Molesworth was a trailblazing champion and recognised as one of the top 10 players of her time. She went on to become one of Australia’s first female professional tennis coaches.

KEEP an eye on Thanasi Kokkinakis this week at Melbourne Park after the young Aussie completed the best week of his tennis life capturing his first ATP title beating Arthur Rinderknech 6-7(6), 7-6(5) 6-3 on Saturday.

Kokkinakis has long been considered a prospect, but injuries have hampered his progress.

“I think my body’s adapted. I think I’ve become a bit smarter in myself, things that I started to do. Me and my team, I found a trainer that I really like in Jono, being smart about what I do, how often I do things,” Kokkinakis said.

A TV presenter has aired a story that Daniel del Potro reportedly stole nearly $30 million from his son Juan Martin del Potro.

And the Argentine star allegedly only found out about after his father had died.

Mr Del Potro Senior was in charge of finances from the start of his career.

“In the bank, he should not have more than 3 million dollars. It’s a lot of money, of course, but he thought he never had to work again in his life when he realised this disaster,” Karina Mazzocco revealed.

“Del Potro’s father, a veterinarian by profession, swindled his own son. Juan found himself with the worst scenario when he got into the numbers.”

SOME players never learn. Brit Dan Evans went on a rant during his Sydney semi-final clash against Aslan Karatsev last week.

TNew ATP rules say bathroom breaks can only be taken at the end of a set and they can only last a maximum of five minutes.

Karatsev opted to change his outfit and took some time to re-emerge on court, which prompted Evans to hit out: “That’s a f** embarrassment to the sport, embarrassing. F him. You didnlt’ apply the rules. You didn’t!”

Karatsev went on to win 6-3, 6-7 (13), 6-3.

Chis Evert in action at Wimbledon in 1978. Photo: Roger Parker Fotosports International

AND finally… sad to hear Former world No. 1 Chris Evert has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

“I feel very lucky that they caught it early and expect positive results from my chemo plan,” Evert wrote in a statement on Twitter.

Former world No. 1 Martina Navratilova reacted: “We are all with you and behind you Chrissie, you are a true champion and I have no doubt you will conquer this nasty opponent.”

We wish her well.