NOVAK Djokovic has spoken of his “extreme disappointment” following the Australian judges’ stunning decision to expel him from the country.
The Serbian has spent the past week being embroiled in a row over the Covid vaccine status, causing the 34-year-old not only to lose his chance to defend his Australian Open title but also face a ban. 3 years. Australia.
In a statement, the tennis player said he was “deeply disappointed” with the ruling, but said he would “cooperate” with it and leave the country.
He added that he was “uncomfortable” with the focus on him in recent weeks, and said: “I hope that we can all now focus on the game and the tournament that I like.”
Djokovic went on to thank his family, friends, fans and “compatriots” for their support.
He is one of only three players in the ATP top 100 who have not been vaccinated.
The three judges unanimously rejected his last call to stay Down Under and compete.
It is believed that the star can now be paraded to the airport under armed guard.
ACE HAS STARTED
Djokovic met with immigration and Border Force officials to stage a covert confrontation at an undisclosed location yesterday before government lawyers later argued that he poses an “excessive risk” to the public.
They claim this is proven by his decision to attend work events while infected with Covid.
It’s been an expensive 10 days in Australia for the 20-time Grand Slam winner, who now faces paying his own legal fees as well as Australian government fees, while also missing out. potential £2.32 million to win the Opening.
Djokovic met at least 25 children at three events in Serbia while testing positive for the virus and facing jail for floating isolation rules, it is reported. He said he didn’t get the results of his test until after the meeting.
“The commonwealth should not be bound to be subject to the presence of aliens out of fear of what might happen if they are removed,” Aus attorney Stephen Lloyd said last night.
DJOKOVIC NOT AGAINST POWER
“True or false, he is said to espouse anti-vaccination views.”
However, the ace’s legal team hit back – and denied claims he took a “famous stance on vaccinations”.
Nick Wood, representing Djokovic, said the comments he made about the vaccine in April 2020 were not necessarily relevant – and he has not publicly linked himself to those who are for or against it. .
The legal eagle said the star was “not an expert” and would do what was best for his body, Mr Wood said – adding that the minister had ordered Djokovic “not to be allowed to cancel” The visa is based on an unproven verdict of his. imagination.”
Djokovic’s jab story began when his visa was revoked when he first landed in Aus.
20-time Grand Slam champion Serbian received his marching orders after a six-hour stop at Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport.
News from the courtroom:
- Three judges unanimously ruled that Djokovic had no grounds to contest Immigration Minister Alex Hawke .’s deportation order
- Tennis’s team of lawyers have failed in their attempt to prove Mr Hawke acted unjustly or legally.
- Justice Allsop said he accepts Djokovic can be seen as “an iconic sports star setting a less than ideal example to be followed” of his anti-vaxxer status
- Government lawyers say the star posed “too great a risk” to the Australian public after he met Serbian children with Covid
- It is not yet known if Djokovic will be barred from applying for an Australian visa for the next three years
He was initially exempt from vaccination – his lawyer said, because he contracted Covid-19 in December – to compete before his visa was significantly cancelled.
Djokovic rushed to an immigrant hotel, despite begging to be moved to more elaborate digs with tennis courts or let his personal chef provide vegan meals – request was denied.
A judge then ordered the return of his passport – said he was “agitated” about the incident and asked: “What more could this man do?”
However, in a turning point, Djokovic is said to have been arrested when the government revoked his visa again.
His supporters were pepper sprayed on the streets by police after Immigration Minister Alex Hawke used his powers on the pretext of “good health and order”.
Djokovic’s legal team appealed the decision overnight.
But their pleas to let him stay in Australia have been denied, and he will likely be escorted to the airport and forced to board a plane home today.
‘NOT A GOOD EXAMPLE FOR FRIENDS’
Chief Justice James Allsop, Chief Justice Anthony Besanko and Chief Justice David O’Callaghan unanimously ruled that Djokovic had no grounds to contest the order to deport Hawke.
Justice Allsop earlier said he accepts Djokovic can be seen as “an iconic sports star who is setting a less than ideal example to follow”.
“If Djokovic wins the Open, as he has done in the past, then there is an example to be included in the minister’s reasoning that this is an example for young tennis fans and not too much,” he said. young.
Government officials have yet to say whether they will offer the option to bar Djokovic from applying for a visa to return to the country for the next three years.
The star has faced backlash from Australians, who were divided over the decision to detain him.
More than 83,000 people watched the Federal Court live stream the proceedings to watch the confrontation, while his supporters gathered in the streets outside.
He has not publicly talked about his vaccination status, but has previously admitted he is “opposed” to vaccination.
He told reporters: “Personally I am against vaccination.
“I don’t want to be forced by someone to get vaccinated so I can travel.”
January 4: Djokovic told fans on social media he was on his way to the Australian Open on a medical exemption, writing on Instagram: “I’ve spent some wonderful quality time with my loved ones during during the break and today I’ll be Down Under with a waiver. Let’s start in 2022!!!”
January 5 : Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison warns Djokovic will be on the “next flight home” if his medical exemption is deemed insufficient
January 5 : Djokovic’s visa was canceled when he arrived in Melbourne. Australian Border Force announced that the player “failed to provide appropriate evidence to satisfy entry requirements into Australia”.
January 6: Djokovic was taken to the Park Hotel in Melbourne after his visa was denied. He launched an appeal, which was adjourned until January 10. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said that Djokovic was the victim of “repression”.
January 9th: Djokovic’s lawyers claim he is exempt from the vaccine to enter Australia because he recorded a positive Covid-19 test in Serbia on December 16. However, social media posts suggest he attended several social events in the days following his apparent diagnosis.
January 10: Djokovic’s visa cancellation was quashed by Judge Anthony Kelly, who ordered the Australian Government to pay legal costs and free Djokovic from custody within half an hour.
January 12: Djokovic admitted to making a “mistake in judgment” when attending an interview with a French journalist while Covid was positive. He added that, although he attended a children’s tennis event the day after he was tested, he did not receive notification of the positive result until after the event.
January 13: Djokovic was held to a draw when he faced his colleague Serb Miomir Kecmanovic in the first round.
January 14: Immigration Minister Alex Hawke canceled Djokovic’s visa for the second time, in a statement saying it was for “good health and order reasons”.
January 15: Djokovic’s lawyers have a small victory in court, with the judge agreeing to let the matter be heard by a panel of three judges on Sunday – a decision fiercely opposed by the government
January 16: Djokovic REMOVED his appeal and was told he would be deported.
Reported by PA
https://www.thesun.ie/sport/8213616/novak-djokovic-statement-australia-open/ Novak Djokovic ‘extremely disappointed’ when referee kicked anti-vax tennis star out of Australia because of visa