Mektic/Pavic Make Winning Start at Wimbledon | ATP Tour

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Mate Pavic (left) and Nikola Mektic have earned two grass-court titles in 2023. File photo.

The Croatians were crowned champions at SW19 in 2021

Ninth seeds Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic continued their standout grass-court season Thursday when they kickstarted their Wimbledon title quest in winning fashion.

The Croatians downed Matwe Middelkoop and Marcelo Demoliner 7-6(5), 6-4 in the opening round, where they did not face a break point throughout the one-hour, 38-minute contest. Mektic and Pavic converted their eighth set point in the opener to gain an advantage on the Dutch-Brazilian team.

The 2021 Wimbledon champions Mektic and Pavic, who were finalists at SW19 last year, have won three titles this season, including at the grass-court ATP Tour events in Stuttgart and Eastbourne. They will next meet home favourites Liam Broady and Jonny O’Mara or Rafael Matos and Francisco Cabral.

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In other men’s doubles action, Max Purcell and Jordan Thompson defeated John Isner and Jack Sock 7-5, 6-4. The Australian Purcell teamed with countryman Matthew Ebden to win the Wimbledon title a year ago.

16th seeds Marcelo Melo and John Peers also advanced after they rallied past Robin Haase and Philipp Oswald 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4. Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos, who are seeded 15th, survived Robert Farah and Juan Sebastian Cabal 6-7(6), 7-6(2), 7-6(9). The Spanish-Argentine pair fended off a match point on serve at 5-6 in the decider.

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