World number one Novak Djokovic will not immediately be deported from Australia and can remain in the country until at least Monday, when his case is due to be heard again in court.
Djokovic arrived in Melbourne late on Wednesday night local time after being granted a medical exemption to defend his title at the Australian Open later this month.
But several hours later the Australian Border Force (ABF) declared that Djokovic had “failed to provide appropriate evidence to meet the entry requirements to Australia, and his visa has been subsequently canceled.”
Djokovic was moved from a room at Tullamarine Airport to a hotel facility run by the immigration authorities while the Serbian star’s legal team immediately appealed his deportation.
After several delays, the case appeared in a Federal Circuit Court on Thursday evening local time, where government lawyer Christopher Tran said: “The [Home Affairs] minister does not oppose the granting of an interim injunction that would prevent the applicant from leaving Australia today.”
“It would not be fair on anyone that a decision be made today… that is off the table,” Tran added.
The case was adjourned until 10am local time on Monday, although Djokovic is free to leave Australia of his own accord before then, should he choose.
Representing Djokovic, barrister Nick Wood said the government should be barred from deporting his client until the visa issue is decided in full.