Ball is in Djokovic court as lawyers fight to keep him in Australia

SYDNEY, Jan. 7 (Xinhua) – World number 1 Novak Djokovic will remain in a detention hotel throughout this weekend as his lawyers fight to allow the tennis ace to stay in the country to defend his crown of the Australian Open (AO).

His case is due to go to a Federal Court judge on Monday morning. He was granted an interim injunction after he launched a last-minute offer in Federal Circuit Court, which prevents him from being deported until at least 4 p.m. Monday.

The Serbian superstar’s visa woes started late on Wednesday when he landed in Melbourne ahead of the grand slam set to start on January 17.

Djokovic, a known anti-vaxxer, declined to state his COVID-19 vaccine status, a major sticking point as all AO participants must be fully vaccinated or have a medical exemption to enter Victoria without undertaking the mandatory quarantine of 14 days .

AO organizers announced on Tuesday that Djokovic’s exemption had been granted following a review involving two groups of medical experts.

In a statement released Thursday, however, the Australian Border Force (ABF) said it had “failed to provide appropriate evidence to meet entry requirements” and that his visa was subsequently canceled.

Australian Border Force (ABF) is also investigating two other cases that were allowed to enter the country in a seemingly similar situation with Djokovic.


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