London, UK, 3 July 2021 | Leigh Rogers

Nick Kyrgios predicted that he and Venus Williams could prove a dangerous team in the mixed doubles competition at Wimbledon 2021 – and after the wildcards scored a first-round win, that appears true.

Playing together for the first time, the 26-year-old Australian and 41-year-old American recorded a 6-3 3-6 7-5 victory against American duo Austin Krajicek and Sabrina Santamaria.

Combining to hit 18 winners in their one-hour and 55-minute victory, Kyrgios and Williams move into a second-round showdown with fourth seeds Edouard Roger-Vasselin of France and American Nicole Melichar.

“Definitely today I felt a bit of pressure playing with Venus,” Kyrgios said.

“I really wanted to win. I’ve never really wanted to win a mixed doubles or a doubles match that much before. I was really trying hard.

“It was just a lot of fun. She’s iconic to the sport and she’s an absolute legend. She’ll go down as one of the greatest players ever to pick up a racquet when it’s all said and done.”

Kyrgios was among eight Australian players to score wins in day-five action at the All England Club.

Australian Open 2021 finalists Matt Ebden and Sam Stosur made a winning start to their mixed doubles campaign, defeating Dutch duo Matwe Middelkoop and Kiki Bertens 7-6(3) 5-7 6-3.

There were also wins for Max Purcell, partnering Ukraine’s Marta Kostyuk, and Arina Rodionova, playing with Belarusian Andrei Vasilevski.

Purcell recorded a victory in the gentlemen’s doubles competition too. Partnering Luke Saville, the No.16 seeds posted a hard-fought 3-6 7-6(4) 6-4 win against fellow all-Australian combination John Peers and Jordan Thompson.

Alexei Popyrin, who is partnering South Africa’s Lloyd Harris, also scored a first-round doubles win.

In ladies’ doubles action, Storm Sanders was the sole Australian winner of the day.

The 26-year-old and American partner Caroline Dolehide won their first-round match against Slovenian Kaja Juvan and American Ann Li in straight sets.

Aussies in action – Wimbledon

Gentlemen’s doubles, first round
[16] Max Purcell (AUS)/Luke Saville (AUS) d John Peers (AUS)/Jordan Thompson (AUS) 3-6 7-6(4) 6-4
Alexei Popyrin (AUS)/Lloyd Harris (RSA) d Austin Krajicek (USA)/Tennys Sandgren (USA) 6-4 7-6(4)

Gentlemen’s doubles, second round
[1] Mate Pavic (CRO)/Nikola Mektic (CRO) d Alex de Minaur (AUS)/Matt Reid (AUS) 6-2 6-4

Ladies’ doubles, first round
Storm Sanders (AUS)/Caroline Dolehide (USA) d Kaja Juvan (SLO)/Ann Li (USA) 7-6(4) 6-2
[12] Coco Gauff (USA)/Caty McNally (USA) d Ellen Perez (AUS)/Daria Kasatkina (RUS) 6-3 6-2
Anna Kalinskaya (RUS)/Yulia Putintseva (KAZ) d Sam Stosur (AUS)/Coco Vandeweghe (USA) 7-6(3) 6-3
Kaitlyn Christian (USA)/Nao Hibino (JPN) d Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS)/Christina McHale (USA) 6-3 6-7(4) 6-3

Ladies’ doubles, second round
Varvara Gracheva (RUS)/Oksana Kalashnikova (GEO) d Arina Rodionova (AUS)/Zarina Diyas (KAZ) 6-3 6-1

Mixed doubles, first round
Matthew Ebden (AUS)/Sam Stosur (AUS) d Matwe Middelkoop (NED)/Kiki Bertens (NED) 7-6(3) 5-7 6-3
Max Purcell (AUS)/Marta Kostyuk (UKR) d Marc Lopez (ESP)/Marie Bouzkova (CZE) 6-3 6-4
[WC] Nick Kyrgios (AUS)/Venus Williams (USA) d Austin Krajicek (USA)/Sabrina Santamaria (USA) 6-3 3-6 7-5
Andrei Vasilevski (BLR)/Arina Rodionova (AUS) d John-Patrick Smith (AUS)/Caty McNally (USA) 6-2 6-3

Gentlemen’s singles, third round
Nick Kyrgios (AUS) v [16] Felix Auger-Aliassime (CAN)
Jordan Thompson (AUS) v Ilya Ivashka (BLR)
James Duckworth (AUS) v [23] Lorenzo Sonego (ITA)

Ladies’ singles, third round
[1] Ash Barty (AUS) v Katerina Siniakova (CZE)
Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) v Jelena Ostapenko (LAT)

Gentlemen’s doubles, second round
[16] Max Purcell (AUS)/Luke Saville (AUS) v Luke Bambridge (GBR)/Dominic Inglot (GBR)
Matthew Ebden (AUS)/John-Patrick Smith (AUS) v Ariel Behar (URU)/Gonzalo Escobar (ECU)
Alexei Popyrin (AUS)/Lloyd Harris (RSA) v Oliver Marach (AUT)/Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi (PAK)

Ladies’ doubles, second round
Storm Sanders (AUS)/Caroline Dolehide (USA) v Andreea Mitu (ROU)/Monica Niculescu (ROU)

Mixed doubles, second round
[17] John Peers (AUS)/Zhang Shuai (CHN) v Roman Jebavy (CZE)/Marketa Vondrousova (CZE)
Matthew Ebden (AUS)/Sam Stosur (AUS)
v [2] Mate Pavic (CRO)/Gabriela Dabrowski (CAN)
Max Purcell (AUS)/Marta Kostyuk (UKR) v [9] Kevin Krawietz (GER)/Kveta Peschke (CZE)
[WC] Nick Kyrgios (AUS)/Venus Williams (USA) v [4] Edouard Roger-Vasselin (FRA)/Nicole Melichar (USA)
Andrei Vasilevski (BLR)/Arina Rodionova (AUS) v [16] Marcus Daniell (NZL)/Sharon Fichman (CAN)