It was reported that Novak Djokovic had been arrested by the Australian government hours after being granted permission to compete at this year’s Australian Open on Monday. However, those claims appear untrue as the world No 1 is set to hold a press conference at 1pm GMT. The Serb, who won last year’s edition of the tournament, was initially denied entry to the country after seeing his visa revoked upon his arrival earlier this month.
Djokovic was detained in a hotel on Thursday after more detail was demanded with regards to his medical exemption to enter Australia and compete in the first Grand Slam of the new year.
It was eventually ruled on Monday that his visa cancellation order would be immediately quashed and that he would be released from detention.
However, it was suggested that Djokovic may still be banned from playing at this month’s tournament in Melbourne and deported by government officials in spite of the verdict.
It was claimed he was arrested shortly after the end of his court case on Monday, with his legal team weighing up their options as they draw up plans to respond, according to The Pavlovic Today.
The report adds that the Australian government are keen to send Djokovic on his way and are looking to do so as a matter of urgency, with his proposed deportation said to be ‘underway’.
Djokovic’s brother, Djordje, told Serbian outlet Sportklub: “What we can do is to let this be known all over social media – they want to capture and lock up Novak again.
“We’re currently consulting with PRs about next steps. He is at the moment with his lawyers in the room they were during the hearing, thinking about options.”
However, it has also been claimed by The Age that reports of Djokovic’s arrest are inaccurate, with a final decision on whether or not to overturn Monday’s ruling still in the process of being made.
It was revealed after the verdict that Australia’s immigration minister, Alex Hawke, has the ability to exercise a personal power of cancelling Djokovic’s visa once again
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether Djokovic’s lawyers will eventually be able to ensure his participation at this month’s Australian Open, with his reported arrest likely to pose a significant threat to his hopes of defending his title.
The saga involving the 34-year-old has captured the world’s attention in recent days, with his treatment by officials in Australia sparking plenty of reaction from across the globe.
Boris Becker, who served as Djokovic’s coach between 2014 and 2016, recently urged him to get vaccinated in order to steer clear of any potential setbacks and provide himself with the best chance of winning more Grand Slam titles in the near future.
“On this occasion I think he is making a big mistake in not getting vaccinated,” Becker told the Daily Mail.
“It is one that threatens what remains of his career and his chance to cement himself as the greatest player of all time.
“Four times I sat in his box as he won the Australian Open, so I am fully aware of his great strengths as an incredible competitor.
“I also think he has a great character that can easily be misunderstood. Yet these strengths can also be weaknesses.
“The same incredible determination which I saw win so many close matches can be a vulnerability with his stubbornness.”
Djokovic is yet to publicly confirm his COVID-19 vaccination status but has spoken out against mandated jabs on a number of previous occasions.