SYDNEY (AFP) – Tennis superstar Novak Djokovic was given a COVID-19 vaccine exemption because he tested positive for the virus in December, his lawyers said in a court filing yesterday, three days after Australian border agents placed him in a Melbourne detention centre.
The world number one has also requested to be moved to a facility where he can train for the Australian Open, his lawyers said, after a vaccine exemption to play the tournament was rejected.
“The date of the first positive COVID PCR test was recorded on 16 December, 2021,” his lawyers said in a filing to the federal court seeking to overturn the cancellation of his Australian entry visa.
Djokovic, an outspoken vaccine sceptic, will have his appeal heard in court tomorrow.
Border agents tore up Djokovic’s entry visa for failing to meet the country’s tough COVID-19 vaccine requirements when he landed in Melbourne on Wednesday.
Foreigners are still mostly banned from travel to Australia, and those granted entry must be fully vaccinated or have a medical exemption.