Djokovich Visa Revoked Must Leave Australia Open

Published January 17, 2022 by Sol FH

Djokovich Visa Revoked Must Leave Australia Open

Nine-time Aussie Open Champion Novak Djokovich will not be able to break Grand Slam world record as Serbian star deported.

ATP #1 ranked Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic has been deported from Australia after losing a court request to stay in the country and play in the Australian Open.

The unvaccinated player was rejected by a judges decision to revoke his visa on apparent "health and good order" grounds.

Djokovic commented that he was "extremely disappointed" and soon after left for Dubai. The Serb fought for ten days to defend his title in the Australian Open having won the Grand Slam nine times in the past, including last year. 

Today would have been his opening match in the tournament, and fans outside the courtroom fell silent as the decision was made. 

Scott Morrison, Australian Prime Minister commented that he "welcomed the decision to keep our borders strong and keep Australians safe" but some people are very upset at the way his government had handled the affair. 

Immigration Minister Alex Hawke had initially cancelled the visa but Djokovich immediately launched a case to appeal the decision. Hawke's reasoning was that Djokovic's presence in the country was a risk that could empower anti-vaccine sentiment. 

Before the judge on Sunday, Djokovic's attorney's were unsuccessful in their argument that deporting the star based on that reasoning would also risk scaling anti-vaccine sentiment. 

Chief Justice James Allsop commented that the Australian court ruling was based on the legality of the minister's decision, not on whether or not  it was the correct decision to make.

Djokovic was able to enter Australia after he was granted medical exemption by a pair of independent health panels - one that Tennis Australia had commissioned, and the other by the Victoria state government. Djokovic had tested positive for COVID in mid-December but came into Australia after negative tests. 

On January 5, the Australian Border Police detained him and revoked his visa after they claimed he did not meet federal requirements. 

A judge overturned that decision and Djokovic got his visa back but the Australian government stepped in last week and again revoked his visa stating public interest as the reason.

Djokovich has not been a promoter of the anti-vax movement, even though he himself is not vaccinated. Albeit, Aussie anti-vaxxers have take to social media with the hashtag #IStandWithDjokovic in recent posts.

The Australian Open Begins

The deportation of Djokovic has stirred things up for the players left in the tournament. Bookmaker bet365 Sports has been working to ensure bettors will have up-to-date odds on each match this year. Prior to getting started, bet365 is in favor of Daniil Medvedev to win outright at 2.40, but, Alexander Zverev is close in second at 3.40. Rafael Nadal, who now has the chance to win the all-time Grand Slam record (Nadal, Djokovic, and Federer all tied at 20) and he is third in the odds race at 7.00 for the win.

Odds in this article at the bookmaker mentioned above were accurate at the time of writing on January 16 at 18:00 GMT.

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