But Laura Robson, Naomi Broady and Cameron Norrie all fell by the wayside on day one at the All England Club.
Top seed Murray came through the first test of his dodgy right hip with flying colours, beating lucky loser Alexander Bublik 6-1 6-4 6-2 on Centre Court.
The build-up to Murray’s title defence has been dominated by concerns over his form and fitness after he was forced to miss two days of training.
But the Murray who lost so woefully to Jordan Thompson in the opening round at Queen’s Club two weeks ago was nowhere to be seen.
The Scot continued to limp between points, as he had since resuming practice on Friday, but when it mattered his movement was just one of the things he did well in a routine win.
All that held up Murray were two brief rain delays, but he did not allow his momentum to be disrupted and eased to victory in an hour and 44 minutes, setting up a second-round clash with another unorthodox player in German-Jamaican Dustin Brown.
Murray said: «I was a bit nervous this morning. I hadn’t been able to do as much as I would have liked in the build-up, didn’t know the guy I was playing.
«Obviously, first match at a slam, there’s always a few extra nerves. Once I got out there and got the early break, saved a few break points in my first service game, I felt good.
«I moved well. So for a first match, considering how I was feeling five, six days ago, it was really positive.»
Konta is over the first hurdle after she exacted swift revenge on her recent French Open conqueror Hsieh Su-wei 6-2 6-2.
There was also little sign of the spine injury that forced Konta to withdraw from Eastbourne last week, and the world number seven will face Croatian Donna Vekic in round two.
«I’m feeling well,» she said. «I said after I’d hit on Sunday that that was kind of the first test to see how I was doing. I felt absolutely fine. And it was no different today.»
Watson joins Konta in the second round after a 6-1 7-6 (7/5) win against Belgium’s Maryna Zanevska.
British number four Bedene had a far more torturous route, however, eventually coming through a marathon slug-fest with big-serving 21st seed Ivo Karlovic 8-6 in the fifth set.
The previous four sets had all gone to tie-breaks, and in total 61 consecutive games went with serve until Bedene finally wore the 38-year-old Croatian down.
«A five-set win with only one break of serve, it feels good,» he said.
«It wasn’t easy to see at the end, but he was getting tired, all he could do was serve, but I felt good and I was hoping we would finish the match today.»
Robson, first up on Court 18, was well beaten 6-4 6-2 by Brazilian Beatriz Haddad Maia and Broady went down by the same score to Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu.
And Norrie’s first match at Wimbledon ended in defeat as the wild card was outclassed by 12th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Norrie has taken time out from a sociology degree in Texas to play professional tennis this year but the 21-year-old was given a lesson by Tsonga, who cruised to a 6-3 6-2 6-2 victory.