CNN  — 

Novak Djokovic has arrived back in Serbia’s capital Belgrade after his deportation from Australia ended the world No. 1 tennis player’s hopes of playing in the Australian Open.

Djokovic traveled to Belgrade from Melbourne via Dubai after losing a court challenge on Sunday against the Australian government’s decision to cancel his visa on public health and order grounds.

Crowds gathered at the airport to welcome the 34-year-old Serbian back home – chanting his name and holding banners and flags in support – on Monday. The evening before, a building in Belgrade was illuminated with the words “Nole [Djokovic’s nickname], you are the pride of Serbia.”

The Serbian Olympic Committee said it was “very disappointed” over Australia’s “scandalous decision” to deport Djokovic, adding that a “huge injustice” had been committed, while Serbian Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said the visa cancellation was “scandalous.”