After a walkover by Serbia, Ash Barty and John Peers won bronze in the mixed doubles event.
J. Peers Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
After Serbia’s world no. 1 Novak Djokovic withdrew from the Tokyo 2020 Olympics due to injury, Australian tennis players Ash Barty and John Peers were awarded the bronze medal in the mixed doubles, giving Australia its sixth tennis medal in Olympic history.
A match between Barty and Peers and Djokovic and Nina Stojanovic was scheduled for Saturday night. But Djokovic pulled out of the men’s singles bronze match against Pablo Carreo Busta after losing in three sets, citing a left shoulder injury.
This is a dream come true for John and myself,” Barty remarked. We came to compete, and we came to bring home a medal for our country. It’s amazing that he may now add a bronze medal to Australia’s collection.
This is something we both worked hard for,” the Wimbledon winner continued.
It’s amazing to be able to bring a medal home for our country since we worked hard to get here and played great tennis all week.
Neither Australian player expected the bronze medal match to end in a walkover, but Djokovic said he had no choice but to withdraw.
Following his loss in the singles competition, Djokovic blamed “mental and physical weariness” for his performance. I gave it my all, but I’m disappointed to have come up short in the biggest games.
Before Saturday, Australia’s tennis event in Tokyo had been rather quiet, with none of the country’s four men or three women advancing past the round of 32 in the singles category. The two women’s pairs were eliminated in the quarterfinals, and the two men’s pairs were eliminated in the first round.
Still, Barty and Peers advanced to the semifinals by defeating teams from Argentina and Greece before falling in a tiebreaker to eventual champions Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Andrey Rublev (Russian Olympic Committee).
There had been no Olympic medals for Australia in the mixed doubles event until now (which was only introduced to the schedule at London 2012).
Alicia Molik, an Australian, was the last to win a tennis medal for her country when she placed third in the women’s singles competition at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.
Former cricket player Barty is only the second Australian first-class cricketer to earn an Olympic medal, following Ric Charlesworth’s 1976 silver medal in hockey.
Peers is a doubles expert who has Reached the finals of the Australian Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open.
Peers remarked, “The Olympics are very special for all of us here.” As Australian tennis players, we are proud to wear the green and gold of our country’s flag.
When we have the opportunity to represent ourselves and one another, we do so with dignity and honour.
Sunday will be the Final day of Tennis at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
It’s an all-Russian affair in the men’s singles final between German Alexander Zverev and Russian Karen Khachanov, and the Russian Olympic Committee will win gold regardless of the outcome of the mixed doubles final.