Second seed and heavy Italian crowd favorite Roberta Vinci and five-time champion Anabel Medina Garrigues highlighted Tuesday's opening-round winners at the $235,000 Italiacom Open tennis event.
Vinci got past qualifier fellow Italian Giulia Gatto-Monticone 7-6 (8-6), 6-3, while the unseeded Medina Garrigues defeated German qualifier Kristina Barrois 6-4, 4-6, 6-2 on the red clay at Country Time Club.
The Spanish Medina Garrigues titled here in 2001, from 2004-06, and again in 2011.
Meanwhile, fourth-seeded Czech Klara Zakopalova dismissed another Italian favorite, Flavia Pennetta, 6-2, 2-6, 6-3. Pennetta tilted here in 2009 and was the runner-up in 2004.
Fifth-seeded Spaniard Lourdes Dominguez Lino got past Romanian Alexandra Dulgheru, 5-1, retired, while two more upsets occurred when Czech Renata Voracova took out sixth-seeded Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu 7-5, 6-2 and German Dinah Pfizenmaier topped eighth-seeded Czech Karolina Pliskova 7-5, 7-5.
Several other women reached the second round including 2011 runner-up Polona Hercog of Slovenia, Italians Karin Knapp and Nastassja Burnett, and Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, who was last year's Palermo runner-up to Italy's Sara Errani and will meet Errani in this second round this time around.
The 2013 Palermo titlist will pocket $41,000.