Madrid, Spain – Fresh off his title in Estoril, Juan Martin del Potro resumed his winning ways Tuesday at the $4 million Madrid Open, an ATP World Tour 1000 Masters event.
The 10th-seeded world No. 11 del Potro popped eight aces in flooring German Florian Mayer 6-4, 6-2 to reach the second round on the unusual blue clay at The Magic Box.
Del Potro will face Russian and fellow former top-10 star Mikhail Youzhny on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, sixth-seeded Czech slugger Tomas Berdych eased into the third round with a 6-4, 6-3 handling of tall South African Kevin Anderson. The former Wimbledon runner-up will meet acrobatic Frenchman Gael Monfils on Day 4.
In opening-round play, ninth-seeded Frenchman Gilles Simon came from behind to get past Italian Fabio Fognini 6-7 (1-7), 6-3, 6-3 and the 12th-seeded oft- injured Monfils, playing in his first match since March, cooled off last week's Munich champion Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany 7-5, 6-7 (2-7), 6-3.
In other first-round action involving seeds, Austrian Jurgen Melzer upended No. 13 Spaniard and fellow lefthander Feliciano Lopez 3-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4, No. 15 Spaniard Fernando Verdasco topped Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin 7-5, 6-2, and No. 16 Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov doused Spaniard Pablo Andujar 7-6 (7-5), 6-4. Andujar titled on red clay in Casablanca last month.
Last week's Belgrade titlist Andreas Seppi stayed hot with a 7-5, 6-4 victory over France's Michael Llodra, while rising Canadian Milos Raonic drove out former top-five star David Nalbandian 6-4, 6-4 in opening-round play.
In other first-round action, Czech Radek Stepanek defeated Aussie Bernard Tomic 6-2, 7-5; Croat Marin Cilic handled Spaniard Albert Montanes 6-3, 6-3; Swiss Stan Wawrinka bested Belgian Olivier Rochus 6-4, 7-6 (7-4); Spain's Marcel Granollers snuck past Argentine Carlos Berlocq, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5; and Argentine Federico Delbonis erased Spain's Albert Ramos 6-3, 6-2.
The 2012 Madrid Open champion will earn $770,000.