Novak Djokovic appeal set for Sunday morning at Federal Court of Australia

Novak Djokovic’s appeal against revoking his visa was confirmed Sunday morning in the Australian Federal Court.

After the legal teams hurriedly appeared on Friday evening, following Immigration Minister Alex Hook’s decision to revoke Djokovic’s visa for a second time on the grounds of “health and good order”, a short procedural session was held on Saturday morning.

In it, Judge David O’Callaghan confirmed that the case had been moved from the Federal Circuit Court and that the main hearing would take place at 9:30am on Sunday (10:30pm UK time).

Djokovic is scheduled to play his first round match at the Australian Open against Serbian Miomir Kekmanovic on Monday.

A schedule was agreed on Friday, with Djokovic detained at 8 a.m. on Saturday to meet with immigration officials before meeting with his lawyer. Then he was expected to be detained overnight, possibly at the Park Hotel.

The world’s number one legal team has revealed that the reasons for their appeal will focus on the irrationality of the decision, which attorney Nick Wood said was based on the threat of “anti-extremist sentiment”.

Djokovic has been waiting since the judge reversed the original decision on Monday to see if Hook would use his powers to reimpose the sentence.

Just before 6pm (7am UK time) on Friday, Hook released a statement saying: “Today I have exercised my power under Section 133c(3) of the Immigration Act to cancel the visa of Mr Novak Djokovic on health and good order on the grounds that it is from It is in the public interest to do so.

The Morrison government is firmly committed to protecting Australia’s borders, particularly in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alex Hawke, Australian Minister of Immigration

This decision followed orders from the Federal Circuit and the Family Court on January 10, 2022, to overturn the prior cancellation decision for reasons of procedural fairness.

“In making this decision, I have carefully considered the information provided to me by the Department of Home Affairs, the Australian Border Force and Mr Djokovic.

“The Morrison government is deeply committed to protecting Australia’s borders, particularly in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The decision means Djokovic also faces a three-year ban from the country, which could mean he will not play again at the Australian Open, although that could be waived.

The situation has dominated global news since Djokovic was arrested at Melbourne airport last Thursday morning after Border Force officials concluded he did not have the correct papers to enter the country.

Novak Djokovic training in Melbourne (Mark Baker/AP)


The nine-time Australian Open champion, who has not been vaccinated, was granted an exemption by Tennis Australia from strict coronavirus vaccination rules for arrivals in the country by virtue of his testing positive last month.

Two other people – Czech player Renata Vorakova and an official – were later told with the same exemption that they could not stay in the country and left before Judge Kelly ruled in Djokovic’s favor on Monday.

Djokovic flew straight to Melbourne Park after his release and has trained every day since, including early Friday morning, but his hopes of staying in the country appeared to fade as the week went on after his behavior was revealed.

Documents revealed that Djokovic tested positive in Serbia on December 16, but was filmed at the events for the next two days and released a statement earlier this week admitting he participated in an interview with French newspaper L’Equipe at his tennis center in Belgrade despite knowing he had taken part in an interview with French newspaper L’Equipe. So. He was infected with the virus.

Novak Djokovic may be detained again at the Park Hotel on Saturday (Hamish Blair/AP)


He also admitted that his declaration form falsely claimed that he had not traveled in the 14 days prior to his trip to Australia, which he attributed to a mistake by his agent.

There have been heavy criticisms of the Australian government’s handling of the situation, but public opinion is in full support of Djokovic’s repatriation.

There was also a lack of sympathy from fellow players, many of whom were skeptical about taking the vaccine, with world number four Stefanos Tsitsipas telling India’s WION news channel: “A very small group chose to go their own way and it kind of seems like the majority are all idiots.”

Andy Murray took a more conciliatory tone after his victory over Riley Opelka in Sydney, saying: “It’s not a good situation. I’m not going to sit here and start kicking Novak while he’s down. It’s not a good situation for anyone.”

“I just want it to be clearly resolved. I think it would be good for everyone if that was the case. It seems to have been around for a long time now, and it’s not great for tennis, not great for the Australian Open, not great for Novak.”

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