Novak Djokovic may well have been freed from his detention hotel and allowed to stay in Australia but he’s still yet to find out if he’ll be playing at the Australian Open.
On Monday, the world No.1, who is unvaccinated and claimed he was given a medical exemption which allows him to compete in the Australian Open this month, won his appeal as the federal court overturned the government’s decision to cancel his visa.
Djokovic is now back on the tennis court and preparing to defend his Australian Open title with the first Grand Slam of the year kicking off on January 17.
Despite a judge sensationally overturning the federal government’s decision to cancel the tennis star’s visa upon arriving at Melbourne airport on Wednesday, saying he had been treated unfairly by Border Force officials, the saga is not yet over.
The 34-year-old still faces the threat of deportation with Immigration Minister Alex Hawke reserving the right to use his personal discretion under the Migration Act to cancel Djokovic’s visa again.
Should Hawke opt to cancel his visa again, we could see the the nine-time Australian Open champion banned from the country for three years.
A spokesperson for Hawke said on Monday evening: ‘Following today’s Federal Court determination on a procedural ground, it remains within Immigration Minister Hawke’s discretion to consider cancelling Mr Djokovic’s visa under his personal power of cancellation within section 133C(3) of the Migration Act.
‘The Minister is currently considering the matter and the process remains ongoing.’
It is thought Hawke will reach a decision on Tuesday (local time) and with Melbourne 11 hours ahead of the UK, British tennis fans will likely wake up on Tuesday morning with the verdict already known.
For now, Djokovic is continuing with his preparations and took to social media to thank his fans for their support in recent days,
‘I’m pleased and grateful that the judge overturned my visa cancellation. Despite all that has happened, I want to stay and try to compete at the Australian Open,’ Djokovic wrote in a message on social media.
‘I remain focused on that. I flew here to play at one of the most important events we have in front of the amazing fans.
‘For now I cannot say more but THANK YOU all for standing with me through all this and encouraging me to stay strong.’
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