Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios during a doubles match at the Australian Open

Thanasi Kokkinakis wears rainbow armband in support of Australian Open Pride Day event 

Neelabhra Roy
SENIOR ANALYST

Thanasi Kokkinakis showed his support for the LGBT community by wearing a rainbow armband ahead of the Australian Open's first Pride Day event.

The Australian wore the armband during his doubles match partnering Nick Kyrgios in the third round.

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Thank you @TKokkinakis for supporting our AO Pride Day wearing our rainbow sweatbands on court three. Just amazing to have this kind of support. AO Pride Day is tomorrow #AusOpen #AOPride
11:02 AM · Jan 23, 2022

The Australian Open has organized a Pride Day event on Monday during which Rod Laver Arena will be lit up in rainbow colors.

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley talked about the "special events" the organization has hosted for the LGBT+ community over the years.

“For many years we’ve hosted special events for the LGBTQ+ community, such as the international Glam Slam and our pre-AO Pride night, so bringing many of our initiatives together on AO Pride Day is the natural next step."
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Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios into men's doubles quarterfinals

2022 Australian Open: Day 7

Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios received a wildcard to the men's doubles event and started by defeating compatriots Alex Bolt and James McCabe in straight sets. In the second round, the pair were up against top seeds Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic.

They stunned the Croatian duo by beating them 7-6, 6-3 to qualify for the third round. Against 15th seeds Ariel Behar and Gonzalo Escobar, the Aussies won the first set 6-4 before the South American duo took the second set by the same scoreline. But Kyrgios and Kokkinakis won the deciding set 6-4 to make it through to the quarterfinals.

The pair will now take on sixth seeds Tim Putz and Michael Venus for a place in the last four. They will be looking to become the first Australian duo to win the men's doubles event at the Australian Open since Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde in 1997.

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Both players have already been knocked out in the singles, with Kokkinakis losing to Yannick Hanfmann in the first round while Kyrgios lost to World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev in the second round.

The Australian Open is gradually reaching the business end with nearly all the singles quarterfinalists being decided. Big names include Rafael Nadal, Medvedev, Ashleigh Barty and Barbora Krejcikova.

So far, a number of top seeds have been knocked out, some prematurely. These include Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev and Hubert Hurkacz, among others. There have been a number of notable eliminations in the women's draw as well, with the likes Garbine Muguruza, Maria Sakkari and Paula Badosa out of the tournament.

The singles quarterfinals will get underway on Tuesday.


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Edited by Nihal Taraporvala
 
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