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Novak Djokovic handed big reprieve in Aus Open defence but troubles still not over

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In a new update in the ongoing Novak Djokovic Australian Open row, the 20-time Grand Slam winner will be allowed to stay in Melbourne until his appeal resumes.

Novak Djokovic

Image: AP

In a new update in the ongoing Novak Djokovic Australian Open row, the 20-time Grand Slam winner will be allowed to stay in Melbourne until his appeal resumes. The tennis star’s visa was revoked on his arrival in Melbourne for the upcoming Australian Open as he failed to obtain the right visa for the medical exemption he was granted. The medical exception was granted to the Serbian tennis star from the COVID-19 vaccination requirements needed to play in the Tennis Australia organised Australian Open as he refused to disclose his vaccination status.


Djokovic was held at the Melbourne airport overnight as he was supposed to be ‘removed’ from the country later on Thursday but it seems now that he has decided to challenge the decision by going to the Federal Court. The Court was adjourned till 6 PM local time meaning that he would stay the night in Melbourne. However, they have now adjourned till 10 AM on Monday in Melbourne itself but they have allowed him to stay on in the city till then. He will be staying in a ‘quarantine hotel’ until the whole situation is sorted out. The Court was also informed that Tennis Australia will need to know by next week if the Serbian tennis star will be allowed to play in the Australian Open or not.


Novak Djokovic vaccine row: Australian PM says Djokovic ‘not above the rules’


Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison tweeted that Novak Djokovic’s visa had been cancelled. He then said that the border rules apply to everyone and Australia’s strict border controls have been crucial to keeping their COVID death rates low. “Mr Djokovic’s visa has been cancelled. Rules are rules, especially when it comes to our borders. No one is above these rules. Our strong border policies have been critical to Australia having one of the lowest death rates in the world from COVID, we are continuing to be vigilant,” Morrison said in his tweet. This comes as a huge blow to the Serbian tennis star who was vying for a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam title that would have taken him ahead of fellow tennis legends Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. Currently, all three of them are on 20 Grand Slam title wins.


Image: AP

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