For weeks, the entry debate about Novak Djokovic to Australia kept tennis fans in suspense. Then it was clear: He had to leave the country. Now there was the official reason why Djokovic was not allowed to play.
Four days after Novak Djokovic’s appeal against the annulment of his visa was rejected, the Federal Supreme Court has announced its reasoning. It was therefore reasonable for the Australian government to assume that the Serbian tennis pro had an anti-vaccination attitude and was a threat to the population. This emerges from the documents that the court published on Thursday.
“A world tennis star can influence people of all ages, whether young or old, but maybe especially the young and the easily impressed,” said the three judges. Even if Djokovic hadn’t won the Australian Open, the fact that he plays tennis in Australia could have encouraged those who want to be like him and thus fueled anti-vaccination sentiment, it said.
point of view justified
The Djokovic side had previously argued that it was inappropriate to portray the Serbian tennis star as anti-vaccination and that Immigration Secretary Alex Hawke could not know his attitude. However, the court saw it as proven that the government’s view was justified, also because Djokovic had decided against vaccination.
After days of legal disputes, the federal court in Melbourne declared the visa withdrawal legal last Sunday. The world number one then had to leave Australia and cannot defend his title at the current Australian Open. Djokovic had traveled to Australia unvaccinated because he wanted to take part in the Grand Slam tournament with a medical exemption. However, when he entered the country, his visa was canceled because the 34-year-old Serb could not provide sufficient documentation for the special permit.