(CNN) – Although Novak Djokovic’s visa was restored on Monday and released, Australia’s immigration minister can revoke his visa and begin deportation proceedings. Everything will be decided in the next few hours.
Justin Coyle, partner at an Australian law firm in Melbourne, gives us some thoughts on what to expect in this legal showdown.
Why does the decision take so long? Coyle told CNN that the government “actually suffered a huge embarrassment on Monday when it had to massively surrender in federal court.” “They just can’t, from a popularity standpoint, have that happen again.”
This may be partly why Immigration Minister Alex Hawke has delayed his decision, and in part also because the government wants to create a court case on the risks.
Can Djokovic resume again? Yes, even if Hook decides to revoke Djokovic’s visa, the tennis star can apply to a judge for an injunction. During this additional time, you can remain in the state and appeal the decision. “You can’t appeal just because you want to appeal,” Coyle said; Djokovic will have to prove to the judge that he has valid reasons to protest the decision.
Can the government allow Djokovic to stay? Hawk could choose to allow the tennis star to remain in the country if the government did not have sufficient grounds to deport him. They may “not be able to pull the trigger…because they may think this isn’t bulletproof at all,” Coyle said.
What is the resolution period? There is none, from a legal point of view. But Coyle said waiting until the tournament kicks off to revoke Djokovic’s visa would be a political and PR “disaster” for the government.
Meanwhile, Djokovic already has a rival on his Australian Open debut.
If allowed to stay in the country, nine-times Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic will start his title defense with a match against fellow Serbian Miomir Kekmanovic in the first round of the tournament, according to the draw. Make this Thursday.
Former world number one Rafael Nadal is in the same half-picture as #1 seed Djokovic, but they won’t meet until the semifinals, if they get there.
Nadal will face American sixth seed Marcos Giron in the first round. Of the top 20 Spanish titles, only one is the 2009 Australian Open.
The main draw for the tournament is scheduled for next Monday, January 17th.