Sam Goodwin·Sports Editor, yahoo! Sport
13th January 2022 – (Sydney) The Australian government is reportedly ‘preparing a case’ to deport Novak Djokovic over discrepancies in the tennis star’s arrival in Australia.
Immigration Minister Alex Hawke has again delayed a decision on whether to use discretionary powers to cancel the World No.1’s visa, as he considers evidence provided by Djokovic’s lawyers on the matter.
Australian Border Force officials cancelled Djokovic’s visa last week for entering the country while unvaccinated, only for the cancellation to be later quashed by a federal court.
But one week later, uncertainty remains about whether the tennis star will still be allowed to stay in the country.
A spokesperson for Mr Hawke revealed on Wednesday that Djokovic’s lawyers have provided extra documentation in his defence.
“Mr Djokovic’s lawyers have recently provided lengthy further submissions and supporting documentation said to be relevant to the possible cancellation of Mr Djokovic’s visa,” a statement said.
“Naturally, this will affect the timeframe for a decision.”
According to an explosive report in the Herald Sun, immigration officials are leaning towards deporting Djokovic.
The publication quoted an unnamed government source that said allowing Djokovic to stay in the country would set a “dangerous precedent”.
The source claims the government is willing to cop international backlash if Djokovic is deported, but feels it is necessary to uphold the national interest.
Veteran political journalist Paul Bongiorno backed up the reports on Wednesday night, tweeting: “I am hearing Alex Hawke will boot out the Joker tomorrow.”