Tennis dad Dokic threatens to blow up embassy
Damir Dokic, father of Jelena, arrested with illegal bombs after threatening Australia’s Serbian ambassador with a rocket launcher
Tennis dad from hell, Damir Dokic, father of former top 10 player Jelena, is back in the headlines after he was arrested in Serbia for threatening to blow up the Australian embassy with a rocket launcher and kill ambassador Clare Bergin because of an interview his now estranged daughter gave to an Australian magazine, in which she claimed he used to beat her.
He told the Serbian daily paper Blic he was serious about the threat and had an "arsenal of weapons". When police raided Dokic's home in Vrdnik, north of Belgrade, they discovered he was not lying - they siezed seven hunting rifles and a Beretta handgun, for which he had permits, as well as two illegal bombs and a cache of .357-calibre bullets. He has been charged with threatening to harm Bergin and with possession of illegal firearms and explosives.
Originally from Yugoslavia Damir and his family moved to Australia in 1994 where Jelena rose through the tennis ranks and came to global prominence in 1999 when, as a 16-year-old, she beat the world No 1, Martina Hingis, at Wimbledon. But her fame was matched by that of her father who became notorious for his drunk and abusive antics on the tennis tour - and he always overshadowed his daughter even though she spent two years in the world's top 10.
The former lorry driver was ejected from a tournament in Birmingham in 1999 after calling tennis officials Nazis, he was then arrested for lying in the road and jumping on a car bonnet. The following year he was thrown out of Wimbledon for stamping on a journalist's phone, and was banned from the women's tour for six months after an argument about the price of fish at the US Open.
In 2001 Dokic took his family back to Serbia, but parted ways with Jelena soon after.
Jelena returned to Australia alone last year and is trying to rebuild her career. She won three singles tournaments last year and in an interview with Sport & Style magazine said: "We can't pick who our parents are and what happens. When you have a situation like mine, you just have to deal with it." ·
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