Australia again cancels tennis star Novak Djokovic's visa
Australian Immigration Minister Alex Hawke on Friday canceled the visa for Novak Djokovic, tennis men's singles world No.1, over his right to stay in the country to play in the upcoming Australian Open.
"Today I exercised my power under section 133C(3) of the Migration Act to cancel the visa held by Mr Novak Djokovic on health and good order grounds, on the basis that it was in the public interest to do so," Hawke said in a statement.
This was the second time Djokovic's visa was revoked, following the first time upon his arrival on January 6, amid questions over a vaccine exemption he'd received. An overturn was ruled by the country's Federal Circuit Court on January 10. He was then given a first-round draw on Thursday.
With the tournament kicking off in three days, Djokovic is now scheduled to meet with immigration officials on Saturday morning; till then, he is not required to be in detention.
If Djokovic doesn't make it to the first-round match, fifth seed Andrey Rublev will move into the open position, causing a knock-on effect on several other players.
Djokovic, who seeks a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam title in Australia, now faces the possibility of being deported.
An emergency late-night court hearing went underway on Friday, spelling out for Djokovic that he would go into detention on Saturday morning and that the case would be transferred to Australia's Federal Court.
Djokovic's side wants the full hearing to take place on Sunday morning, meaning the result of the week-long saga would come out before the tournament officially starts on Monday.