Novak Djokovic visa appeal to be live streamed with questions raised over timeline after maskless images

Australian Open
Novak Djokovic speaks to the media

Novak Djokovic’s appeal against the Australian Border Force’s decision to cancel his visa will be streamed live, but there is confusion over the timeline of events the past two months.

After his visa to enter Australia was cancelled as border officials determined he “failed to provide appropriate evidence to meet the entry requirements”, Djokovic lodged an appeal to prevent his deportation.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner’s case against the Australia Minister For Home Affairs will be heard by Judge A Kelly at 10:00 local time on Monday (23:00 GMT Sunday).

Proceedings will be streamed live on Microsoft Teams, but those who join have been told: “Members of the public are not to provide their name when connecting. It is imperative that you keep your camera and audio off as this can affect the progress of the hearing. Any form of recording or photography is not permitted.”

The defending Australian Open champion is adamant that he followed the guidelines provided by Tennis Australia as he was granted an exemption to compete “by an Independent Expert Medical Review panel commissioned by Tennis Australia”, and “the decision of that panel had been reviewed and endorsed by an independent Medical Exemptions Review Panel of the Victorian State Government”.

The Serbian set off to Australia as he believed he would be able to enter the country due to the fact that he contracted Covid-19 up to six months prior to arriving Down Under.

Novak Djokovic was granted exemption after testing positive for Covid-19 in December – lawyer

Court documents published on Saturday revealed that he tested positive for Covid-19 on December 16 and had been symptom free for more than 72 hours 14 days later, but there are question marks over the timeline of events.

According to Tennis Australia, the deadline for applying for a medical exemption to compete at the Australian Open was December 10 – before Djokovic claims he tested positive.

On the same day he tested positive for Covid-19, a maskless Djokovic was part of an indoor panel discussion as he attended a ceremony after a stamp was launched in his honour.

Then on December 17 he was pictured posing with children at an indoor event in his hometown with The Belgrade tennis federation publishing pictures on social media bout the event.

Some claim that he had had given up on competing at the Australian Open, but his positive Covid-19 test opened the door for him to travel Down Under.

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