Australia has cancelled the visa of female Czech tennis player Renata Voracova who entered the country to play in this month’s Australian Open, several media said Friday.

AFP video and photo images showed a woman who appeared to be Voracova peering out of the window of a Melbourne immigration detention facility, where she had reportedly been taken, on Friday evening.

The 38-year-old player was detained by officials of the Australian Border Force, said reports by national broadcaster ABC, The Age newspaper and the Sydney Morning Herald, all quoting a government source.

According to the reports, which could not be immediately confirmed with the home affairs ministry, Voracova was transferred to Melbourne’s Park Hotel building, which now serves as a detention facility holding some 32 refugees and asylum seekers.

She was reportedly told she would have to leave the country soon. But it was not known if she would mount a legal challenge, as Djokovic has done, the reports said.

Voracova was believed to have entered Australia in December claiming an exemption to Covid-19 vaccination because she had recently been infected with the virus, the newspapers said.

Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews had confirmed earlier Friday that two other players or staff besides Djokovic were under investigation for visa issues.

The Australian government said Friday that a recent infection with the Covid-19 virus does not mean a foreign national can enter the country without being fully vaccinated.

“Renata Voracova is in the same detention (facility) as Djokovic, together with several other tennis players, in Melbourne,” the ministry told AFP in an email.

The ministry said it was protesting against the detention but Voracova, the world number 81, had agreed to leave Australia and not take part in the Open “as her training options are limited”.

The vaccine-sceptic Djokovic entered Australia this week on an exemption from its strict pandemic restrictions.

But the world number one was put in an immigration detention hotel in Melbourne and had his visa revoked pending a court ruling on his further stay, expected on Monday.

Djokovic, 34, is seeking a record 21st Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, which starts on January 17.

The 38-year-old Voracova, a doubles specialist, also entered on an exemption as she had recently recovered from Covid, said the Czech daily Sport.

Voracova already played at the Melbourne WTA event alongside Katarzyna Piter of Poland this week, but they crashed out in the first round.

Sport said she had had her exemption “reassessed” by Australian since then.

The ministry said the Czech general consulate in Sydney was dealing with the situation.

“As far as we know, she proved being safe in a way that would entitle her to play,” the ministry said.

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(this story/news/article has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed)



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