Novak Djokovic tennis news: Australian government visa, Alex Hawke


The Australian government has left the door open for Novak Djokovic admitting the tennis star could benefit from special attention.

Australian Immigration Minister Alex Hawke has admitted he will consider overturning a three-year ban imposed on Novak Djokovic.

The world No.1 tennis star was deported last month after losing his last effort to stay in Australia when Hawke personally intervened to cancel the Serbian’s visa.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion claimed he had an exemption to enter Australia due to testing positive for Covid-19 in December, but was denied entry.

What followed was an 11-day circus that included the first Federal Court case in which the tennis star’s initial visa cancellation was overturned.

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Djokovic finally broke his silence in a Interview with the BBC this week, saying that if his participation in future tournaments depended on him being vaccinated, then “that’s the price I’m willing to pay”.

Hawke has now spoken publicly following the nine-time Australian Open champion’s incredible interview and admitted the door is open for Djokovic to return to play at the Australian Open in 2023.

He confirmed that Djokovic is able to apply for a waiver under “compulsory” or “compassionate” circumstances to have his three-year deportation overturned.

“Mr. Djokovic’s future is up to him to decide how he conducts himself and what he does internationally,” Hawke said, according to The Australian Associated Press.

“The Australian government no longer has a role to play in what it chooses to do.”

He said Australia was “very open” to considering Djokovic’s future submissions and requests.

“It means a future decision-maker makes this (call) when they receive an application,” Hawke said.

“It is an important principle of law that I do not bind a future decision maker.

“We indicated that we would consider this, in the same way that we would consider all the others. We are very open to consideration.

Djokovic has yet to directly address his plans for his eventual return to the Australian Open in 2023.

“I will respect the court’s decision and cooperate with the relevant authorities regarding my departure from the country,” Djokovic said at the time of his deportation.

“I am uncomfortable that the focus of the last few weeks has been on me and I hope we can now focus on the game and the tournament that I love.”

He said he had not been bitten against Covid-19 but had been vaccinated as a child and said whether his participation in future tournaments, including Grand Slam tournaments, depended on his vaccination , then “that’s the price I’m willing to pay”. “I fully understand and support the freedom to choose whether you want to get vaccinated or not,” he said. “I haven’t talked about it before and I didn’t disclose my medical records and vaccination status because I had a right to keep it private and discreet. But as I see it, there are a lot of findings and wrong assumptions and I think it’s important to talk about it and justify some things.

“I have never been against vaccination. I get it overall, everyone is trying hard to manage this virus and hopefully see the end of this virus soon. And vaccination was probably the biggest effort that was made, probably half the planet was vaccinated. And I totally respect that.

“But I’ve always supported the freedom to choose what you put in your body. For me, this is essential. It’s really the principle of understanding what’s right and wrong for you and me as an elite professional athlete, I’ve always carefully reviewed, evaluated everything that comes in from supplements, food, water I drink, sports drinks, anything that goes into my body as fuel. Based on all the information I got, I decided not to take the vaccine starting today.

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