Andy Murray, the two-time Olympic singles champion, got off to a flyer in the doubles at the Tokyo Games.
If we keep the same sort of attitude and everything, prepare diligently, I think we've got a chance of doing well. Andy Murray
Unseeded Murray and fellow Team GB partner Joe Salisbury stunned second seeds France’s Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6-3 6-2 in 75 minutes at Ariake Tennis Park; refusing to melt in the searing heat and humidity.
Victory against the French Open champions who have claimed all four Grand Slams sealed a second-round date with German duo Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz.
In their first match together, Murray, 34 and a 2012 silver mixed doubles medallist with Laura Robson, and Salisbury did not face a break point in a performance described as “simply outstanding”.
Murray, who takes on Canadian ninth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime in defence of his singles title, said: “I think we have the potential to be a really good team. We were well deserved winners – we created lots of chances – but not every doubles match is like that. If we keep the same sort of attitude and everything, prepare diligently, I think we’ve got a chance of doing well.”
Meanwhile, Wimbledon champion and favourite Novak Djokovic’s campaign to become the first male to achieve the Golden Slam – Steffi Graf being the lone female to complete it – remained on track after he defeated Hugo Dellien, the world 139 from of Bolivia, 6-2 6-2 in the first round of the singles in 33degree centigrade heat.
The Serbian meets Jan-Lennard Struff, the world 48, in the second round. Struff beat Brazilian Thiago Monteiro 6-3, 6-4.
Second seed Daniil Medvedev, struggled in the heat to defeat Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik 6-4 7-6(8).
The debuting Medvedev said the heat was “some of the worst” he had experienced, adding: “But you have to play. That’s the Olympics, you go for the medal. You are not here to cry about the heat.”
He felt organisers should consider rescheduling matches for the evenings when temperatures are cooler.
* Quotes from the BBC and Associated Press.