Australia has cancelled Novak Djokovic’s visa for a second time, as a row over his right to remain in the country unvaccinated rolls on.
The decision by Immigration Minister Alex Hawke means the Serb tennis star now faces deportation.
But the 34-year-old can still launch another legal challenge to remain in the country and defend his Australian Open title.
The men’s tennis number one was scheduled to play in the tournament, which begins in Melbourne on Monday.
Djokovic’s visa was first revoked on 6 January after his arrival in Australia, after Border Force officials said he had “failed to provide appropriate evidence” to receive a vaccine exemption.
His presence in the country also drew a huge backlash from the Australian public, which has endured some of the world’s strictest and longest lockdown restrictions during the pandemic.
He was detained for days in an immigration hotel before his visa was reinstated days later by a judge, who ordered his release, ruling that officials had ignored correct procedure when he arrived.
But on Friday evening in Melbourne, Hawke cancelled Djokovic’s visa again under separate powers in Australia’s Migration Act.
The act allows him the minister to deport anyone he deems a potential risk to “the health, safety or good order of the Australian community”.