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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Novak Djokovic thanks fans as he awaits deportation decision

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Tennis star Novak Djokovic has thanked people “around the world” for their support as he awaits a decision on his deportation from Australia.

Djokovic arrived in Australia this week to compete in the Australian Open, despite being granted a controversial exemption from Australia’s vaccination rules.

However, upon landing, he was abruptly denied entry.

Djokovic is currently being held in immigration detention in Melbourne, with a court hearing scheduled for Monday.

In his statement, the men’s world number one tennis player thanked people “all over the world for your unwavering support.”

“I can feel it, and it is greatly appreciated,” he said in an Instagram message.

Djokovic, who has stated his opposition to vaccination, was granted a medical exemption to play in the tournament for unspecified reasons, infuriating many Australians.

Although more than 90 percent of the adult population is fully vaccinated, they are still subject to restrictions as the number of cases of infection rises.

Djokovic’s exemption was granted by two independent medical panels convened by Tennis Australia, the event’s governing body, and Victoria state.

However, Australian Border Force (ABF) officials stated on Wednesday that the 34-year-old player had “failed to provide appropriate evidence” at Melbourne Airport.

The Australian Open will begin on January 17th. Djokovic was attempting to win the tournament for the tenth time, which would make him the most successful man in history, with 21 Grand Slam titles.

Another player, Czech Renata Voracova, has had her Australian visa revoked, according to the Czech government.

According to the foreign ministry, she is being held in the same facility as Djokovic but will withdraw from the Australian Open and leave the country.

SourceBBC
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