Madonna was hoping for good news on Monday, the day when the appeal against the court ruling against her move to adopt four-year-old Mercy James was due to be heard in Malawi.
In her favour, the 50-year-old singer's lawyer will argue that laws which require prospective parents to be residents of the country are outdated. Her adoption bid is also supported by key members of Mercy's family, including her uncle and grandmother.
However, sources at Malawi's Supreme Court say the judge presiding over the case is expected to dismiss it.
The Material Girl's adoption bid had suffered another blow on Friday when the man claiming to be Mercy's father began moves to take full custody of his daughter.
James Kambewa, 24, was due to meet lawyers from the Malawi Law Society on Monday morning. If one takes his case it will be presented to the chief justice of Malawi.
Photo: ę Reuters