World No1 Novak Djokovic has had his Australian visa revoked for a second time and now faces being deported from the country.
Djokovic won an appeal on Monday to remain in the country, but immigration minister Alex Hawke used separate powers in Australia’s Migration Act to again cancel the visa on Friday.
The Serbian must now lodge a fresh legal challenge should he wish to defend his Australian Open title, with the tournament set to begin next Monday.
In a statement released on Friday, Hawke said the decision had been taken “on health and good order grounds, on the basis that it was in the public interest to do so”.
The statement added: “In making this decision, I carefully considered information provided by the Department of Home Affairs, the Australian Border Force and Mr Djokovic.
“The Morrison Government is firmly committed to protecting Australia’s borders, particularly in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Djokovic was given a medical exemption to enter the Australian Open, despite not being vaccinated, only for border officials to block him upon his arrival.
The 20-time grand slam winner was detained for four days while waiting for an appeal against the case on Monday, which went in his favour at Melbourne Circuit Court.
He immediately set about training for the Australian Open, which he has won a record nine times, and was paired with compatriot Miomir Kecmanovic in Thursday’s first-round draw.
But Hawke said on Monday he would “thoroughly consider” Djokovic’s visa status due to concerns over the 34-year-old’s whereabouts prior to arriving in the country.
Djokovic subsequently admitted there was a false declaration on his travel form to enter the country, after it stated he had not travelled in the two weeks before arriving in Australia.
The tennis star, who was seen in Spain earlier this month, put that down to “human error” and accepted breaching isolation rules in December after testing positive for COVID-19.
He has faced widespread backlash since Monday’s initial verdict to allow him to stay in the country, which has strict coronavirus policies, while openly unvaccinated.
Joao Sousa and world number four Stefanos Tsitsipas are among current players to have criticised Djokovic, with the latter accusing him of “playing by his own rules”.