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Novak Dokovic: "Deportation!" Tennis Star Has To Leave Australia Again

Novak Đoković traveled to the Australian Open with a special permit. But Melbourne's border guards did not accept his visa. Now the Serb is flying home again.

The Australian border authorities have canceled Novak Đoković 's visa and refused the entry of the Serbian tennis star. The number 1 in the tennis world rankings has been told that he will have to leave Australia on Thursday.

Đoković had "failed to provide the necessary evidence to enter Australia and his visa was then canceled," said the Australian Border Guard. The decision was made eleven days before the start of the Australian Open in Melbourne, in which 34-year-olds wanted to take part. 

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After his visa has been revoked, the Serb is now waiting in a quarantine hotel in Melbourne's Carlton district for his return journey.

Đoković's exemption had caused anger and incomprehension in Australia. The country has been battling bans and restrictions due to the pandemic for two years and has long had some of the toughest travel restrictions in the world.

Currently, only those who have been twice vaccinated against the corionavirus are allowed to enter Australia. However, exceptions are granted for medical reasons. Đoković has not yet been clear about his vaccination status, but the fact that he applied for such a permit suggests that he is not vaccinated. 

Before leaving, the tennis player announced on Twitter that he had a special permit for the Covid-19 vaccination, which would enable him to take part in the tournament. 

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In Australia, two independent panels of experts decide whether to grant the exemption for special medical reasons. Đoković wasn't the only one to receive such a permit. 

Of the more than 3,500 people who travel to Melbourne for the Australian Open, tournament director Craig Tiley says 26 have applied for entry without a vaccination, "a handful" said Tiley had been approved.

Srdjan Đoković, the tennis player's father, complained to the Serbian news portal Sputnik that his son had been detained for hours in the rooms of the border guard. What happens there is "not just a fight for Novak, but for the whole world". 

He later wrote the word "Deportation!" On the Instagram platform after the Australian authorities refused entry to the tennis professional. "Our pride, our Novak returns ... we should all welcome him as he deserves!"

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