Greek tennis may have been disappointed to see their hero Sefanos Tsitsipas ejected form the Olympic singles when he was expected to give Novak Djokovic a strong challenge for the title, but the two could still face each other in the Mixed Doubles which started on Wednesday.
Partnering Maria Sakkari, the pair are seeded second while Djokovic, in tandem with Nina Stojanovic, are not seeded which gives the Greek pairing a certain psychological advantage over the Serbians who they could meet in the final.
Tsitsipas and Sakari beat the Canadian duo of Felix Auger Aliassime and Gabriella Dabrowski 6-3 6-4 which was quite an achievement considering the Greek idol had not long come off his singles loss to Frenchman Ugo Humbert were he suffered an unfortunate fall.
It also follows Sakkari’s singles loss on Tuesday but the two showed some excellent determination not to lose sight of a possible medal in the Mixed where they must be considered favourites having seen the top seeds from France, Nicolas Mahut and Kristina Mladenovic being surprisingly removed from the field in their opening match by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) pairing of Asian Karatsev and Elena Vesnina 6-4 6-2.
After their win against the Canadians, Sakkari and Tsitsipas will take on the Australian duo of Ash Barty and John Peers on Thursday which should be a testing match for both pairs, the Aussies having dominated in the early stages of their match with Horacio Zeballos and Nadia Podoroska of Argentina to win 6-1 7-6(3) for a place in the last eight.
There was also success for the second ROC pair, Andrey Rublev and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the fourth seeds, who were tested by Croatians Ivan Dodig and Darija Jurak before completing a 5-7 6-4 11-9 victory.
Unfortunately no British pairings appear in the original line-up of the Mixed.