Djokovic had COVID recently, had clearance to enter Aus: Court filing

The Serb is currently in immigration detention in Melbourne after having his visa cancelled on arrival on Thursday

Novak Djokovic moments before leaving for Melbourne to participate in this year's Australian Open | Photo: Twitter

Tennis World No 1 Novak Djokovic relied on a recent COVID-19 infection to secure a written clearance from Australia’s immigration department before travelling to the country, his lawyers said in a court filing on Saturday.

Djokovic returned his first positive test on December 16, 2021, but two weeks later “had not had a fever or respiratory symptoms of COVID-19 in the last 72 hours”, the filing said.

Also read: Djokovic’s detention turns focus on athlete vaccination

The Serb is currently in immigration detention in Melbourne after having his visa cancelled on arrival on Thursday.

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The nine-time Australian Open champion received “a document from the Department of Home Affairs (which) told Mr Djokovic that his ‘responses indicate(d) that (he met) the requirements for a quarantine-free arrival into Australia”, the documents added.

Also read: Djokovic is crucified…just like Jesus, says father seeking son’s release

Djokovic, an outspoken critic of mandatory vaccination, has never disclosed his own vaccination status. He is challenging his visa cancellation in Australia’s federal court in hopes of winning his 21st Grand Slam at the Australian Open, which starts on January 17.

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