Australian tennis legend Pat Cash has thrilled spectators at the Hopman Cup in Perth, with an unexpected run on the court more than 20 years after his last appearance in the tournament.
Cash, 52, represented Australia in the first Hopman Cup in 1989, and made his final appearance in 1995.
He said he was as surprised as everyone else to be back on court.
Cash stepped in to partner American Coco Vandeweghe, who he coaches, after her teammate Jack Sock was injured during his singles match.
Cash and Vandeweghe went down to another makeshift pairing, Japan’s Yuichi Sugita, and 19-year-old Maddison Inglis.
The Perth teenager was another ring-in, following the withdrawal of Sugita’s partner Naomi Osaka due to illness.
With the result of no consequence, Cash was happy to provide the crowd with laughs, although he admitted he would need time to recover from the match.
“I got warmed up nicely,” he said.
“I had a few games where I’m in my peak and then I’m over it. And that was in the first 10 minutes. Then it was downhill.”
Earlier Inglis, who is ranked 771, showed some grit against Vandeweghe in their singles clash.
Despite losing in straight sets, the young Australian was thrilled to get the opportunity to play, after getting an early morning call to head to Perth Arena.