After a three-year ban on visiting Australia was lifted, tennis champion Novak Djokovic will be free to compete in next year’s Australian Open.
According to the Mail Online, Immigration Minister Andrew Giles will grant the Serbian the right of entrance, overturning the former Morrison government’s decision to reject the Serbian player’s visa days before the Open in January.
Then-immigration minister Alex Hawke ruled that despite Djokovic having a recent Covid diagnosis it did not justify an exemption to Australia’s border requirement for visitors to be vaccinated.
Despite a court ruling that the visa Djokovic entered Australia on was valid, Mr. Hawke used his ministerial powers to rule the then-No.1, who was well known for his anti-vaccination stance, could stir up similar sentiment in the community.
After a Federal Court upheld Mr. Hawke’s power to make that decision Djokovic was forced to leave the country.
His Visa was cancelled on the basis of “on health and good order grounds” and the Serbian was deported on the eve of the grand slam and was banned from the competition for three years but reportedly been overturned now.
The decision to allow him compete comes after the 35-year-old had expressed his desire to play in the Australian Open before.
Last month, Djokovic spoke to the Serbian website Sportal about the incident “I am over what happened this year and I just want to play tennis, it is what I do best. Australia has always been the place where I have played my best tennis, the results speak for themselves, so I am always extra motivated to go there. This time even more so.”
“I am hoping for a positive answer.” The Serbian added.
He further said “For the choices I made, I knew there would be certain consequences like not going to America. For Australia it was a different case, I had the exception, but in the end, it did not work out. We know what happened, let’s not go back.”