Mon, 03 Oct 2022

Novak Djokovic has held another training session in Melbourne following his release from detention

Serbian ace Novak Djokovic continued to make up for lost time as he hit the courts for a practice session at Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday, with the world number one's team seemingly having a message for cameras circling overhead.

A Melbourne judge ordered Djokovic's release on Monday as the decision to cancel the 20-time Grand Slam winner's visa was overturned.

READ MORE: The key details from Djokovic's court case

Djokovic had been held at a hotel in the city run by the immigration authorities after he was refused formal entry into Australia last Wednesday, in a dispute over a Covid vaccine exemption which quickly ballooned into a major sporting and diplomatic scandal.

After spending four nights in confinement Djokovic wasted little time in heading for the training courts upon his release, being pictured at Melbourne Park - the venue for the Australian Open - for a late-night session just hours after the judge's decision.

The 34-year-old returned to Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday afternoon local time, where the court was closed for most of the media but cameras filmed from above.

The unvaccinated Djokovic was seen sending balls across the court under the watchful eye of his team, including coach and former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, colorful physio Ulises Badio, and fitness trainer Marco Panichi.

In footage shared by local media outlets, including a report by 9 News Melbourne, one member of Djokovic's team appeared to make his feelings clear with what seemed to be a series of middle-finger gestures towards the cameras.

Cameras picked up the gesture apparently made by the member of the team. � Twitter @9NewsMelb

As the nine-time Australian Open champion enjoys his time on court, his legal team could yet face another date in court after fresh claims that Djokovic misled the authorities with his travel declaration to enter the country.

Djokovic's declaration, which was completed by an agent on his behalf, stated that he had not traveled or would not travel in the 14 days prior to his arrival.

However, images and footage on social media purported to show Djokovic in Belgrade around December 25 before he traveled to Spain to continue training at the end of the month, moving from there to Australia via transit in Dubai.

The Australian Border Force has said it is investigating the claims, with the travel declaration document warning that providing false or misleading information is a "serious offense".

According to Australian media, the maximum penalty if convicted is 12 months' imprisonment.

Meanwhile, Djokovic's case is still being reviewed by Immigration Minister Alex Hawke, who has reserved the right to intervene and potentially cancel the tennis star's visa again.

READ MORE: Australian official issues update as Djokovic deportation drama drags on


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