Tennis superstar Novak Djokovic said on Monday he was still hoping to compete in the Australian Open after winning a stunning victory over the Australian government in his visa battle.
The ruling by a judge in Melbourne overturned the cancellation of Djokovic's visa on Covid-19 health grounds, and ended the unvaccinated player's detention in an immigration facility, potentially clearing the way for him to play in the tournament that starts next Monday.
The ATP, which runs the men's tennis tour, responded by saying: "The series of events leading to Monday's court hearing have been damaging on all fronts, including for Novak's well-being and preparation for the Australian Open."
His mother Dijana, speaking at a press conference in Belgrade, called it "the biggest victory in his career, bigger than all his grand slams".
Djokovic tweeted from Melbourne: "Despite all that has happened, I want to stay and try to compete @AustralianOpen. I remain focused on that."
In an emergency online court hearing, the judge ordered that the decision to cancel Djokovic's visa "be quashed".
He instructed that the 34-year-old men's world number one "be released immediately and forthwith from immigration detention".
The ATP said in a statement that it "fully respects the sacrifices the people of Australia have made since the onset of COVID-19 and the stringent immigration policies that have been put in place," but added that: "In travelling to Melbourne, it's clear Novak Djokovic believed he had been granted a necessary medical exemption."