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novak djokovic relied on a weeks-old covid infection to justify his vaccine-free travel to australia and was given a green light by the federal government just days before arriving in the country, court documents.

The tennis world number one is in immigration detention following the cancellation of his visa on Thursday, hours after he arrived at Melbourne airport.

They say he tested positive for COVID-19 on 16 December and he had a valid visa and medical exemption from the organiser of the Australian Open.

Why is Djokovic being denied entry to Australia- and what are their travel rules?

One of them is Czech player Renata Voracova, whose visa was also revoked due to issues with her exemption.

he is currently embroiled in a row over whether he is exempt from the country's covid vaccination rules.

Djokovic 'told he met travel requirements' The application says he received a document from the Department of Home Affairs on 1 January telling him he met the requirements for quarantine-free travel into Australia.

Djokovic's lawyers said he received an exemption certificate from Tennis Australia, which was "provided by an Independent Expert Medical Review panel" whose decision was endorsed by the Victorian state government's own medical exemptions panel.

The scandal surrounding Djokovic deepened on Saturday, following revelations that Tennis Australia informed players that a prior infection would be a reason to exempt them from Australia's tough border restrictions.

federal health minister, the association said.

He was granted a temporary visa to enter Australia on 18 November, and received a letter from the chief medical officer of Tennis Australia on 30 December recording he had a "medical exemption from Covid vaccination" on the ground that he had recently recovered from the virus.

Djokovic, meanwhile, remains in the Park Hotel, while he waits for Monday's federal circuit court hearing on his challenge to the visa cancellation.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic said they sent a diplomatic note to Australian authorities and are waiting for a reaction.

Voracova's decision to leave was "not based on grounds of deportation", they said, adding that it was her "own decision" to stop participating in the tournament.

Sonia, from Melbourne, said he "definitely should be freed", adding : "If he's got natural immunity, there's no reason why he needs to be essentially locked up in what we think is a detention centre in these sort of inhumane conditions."

The documents reveal that Djokovic relied on a very recent Covid-19 infection, recorded on 16 December by the Institute of Public Health of Serbia, to argue he was exempt from vaccine travel requirements.

about 5.20am, djokovic said he asked for more time.

Serbian officials are "trying everything to make the situation easier for Djokovic", a statement said.

That advice was given despite the health department telling Tennis Australia on two occasions that exemptions did not exist for those recently infected with Covid.

Tennis Australia has largely refused to answer questions or media queries about its handling of the matter.

But a leaked video of Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley emerged in News Corp papers on Saturday afternoon, showing him telling his staff they had done "an unbelievable job" in handling the affair.

"We 've chosen at this point not to be very public with it and simply because there is a pending lawsuit related to entry into Australia.

Once that has run its course, we ’ ll be able to share more with you," he said.

"There's a lot of finger-pointing going on and a lot of blaming going on, but I can assure you our team has done an unbelievable job and have done everything they possibly could according to all the instructions that they have been provided."

“ Informing players they could get into the country on a medical exemption was taken from the Smart Traveller website that Greg Hunt directly referred us to. ” Further details have also emerged about Tiley's interactions with the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation ( Atagi ) about exemptions for players either recently infected with Covid or who had only received one dose.

The Age reported that Tiley had told Atagi the treatment of such players "goes to the heart of the viability of the Australian Open".

The tennis player had also asked for alternative accommodation so he could train for the tournament which starts on 17 January.

The furore meant the Serbian tennis star was unable to celebrate Orthodox Christmas on Friday- an important religious holiday.

"I don't know.

It's very hard."

'Challenging weeks' ahead Daily numbers of coronavirus infections in Australia are repeatedly breaking records as the Omicron variant spreads.

Tennis rivals criticise Djokovic's treatment Even some of those who have criticised the star in the past for his remarks on vaccines have spoken out against the way he is being treated.

I reckon he ’ s going to be pissed off.

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