Novak Djokovic’s lawyers: Recent Covid-19 infection the reason for vaccine exemption

The ongoing Novak Djokovic saga is set to play out in court as the world number one takes the fight to Australian authorities.

According to the player's lawyers, Djokovic was granted a vaccine exemption after contracting Covid-19 last month.

Court documents reveal that the Serb tested positive for the virus on December 16 but didn't encounter a fever or respiratory symptoms.

Djokovic has stayed at an immigration facility in Melbourne since arriving in the country on Thursday. This was due to the cancellation of his visa following scrutiny of his medial exemption.

According to his lawyers, the player is also in possession of a letter from the Chief Medical Officer of Tennis Australia which confirms his medical exemption.

Supporters unfurl a banner outside the Park hotel quarantine facility where it is believed Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic is being detained in Melbourne, Friday, January 7, 2022.

It is claimed that the exemption certificate was "provided by an Independent Expert Medical Review panel commissioned by Tennis Australia", and that "the decision of that panel had been reviewed and endorsed by an independent Medical Exemptions Review Panel of the Victorian State Government".

Djokovic's lawyers added that he was granted an "Australian Travel Declaration" because he was told by the authorities that [he met] the requirements for a quarantine-free arrival into Australia".

The nine-time Australian Open winner must now wait for a hearing on Monday to discover his fate.

In recent days, it emerged that two other people connected to the event have joined Djokovic in being instructed to leave the country by the country's Border Force.

Novak Djokovic fans outside his immigration detention hotel in Melbourne

One of the individuals is Czech doubles specialist Renata Voracova, who played in a warm-up tournament in Melbourne this week but has now opted to leave Australia.

Djokovic is under instruction to stay at Melbourne's Park Hotel, which is used to house asylum seekers and refugees, before Monday's hearing.

The 34-year-old broke his silence on Instagram, saying: "Thank you to people around the world for your continuous support. I can feel it and it is greatly appreciated."

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