A U.S. judge made no immediate ruling Tuesday on hedge fund star David Einhorn's legal attack on Apple Inc, but said the hedge fund had shown a "likelihood of success" if the case goes forward.

U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan in New York reserved decision on hedge fund Greenlight Capital's request to block a February 27 shareholder vote on one of Apple's shareholder proposals. That proposal would eliminate the iPhone maker's ability to issue preferred stock without investor approval.

"Candidly I do think the likelihood of success is in favor for Greenlight," Sullivan said.

Sullivan said he would now focus on whether Greenlight would be irreparably harmed if the vote moves forward. He did not specify when he would issue a ruling on Greenlight's request for an injunction.

(Reporting By Nate Raymond in New York; Editing by Gary Hill)