Sao Paulo, Brazil (SportsNetwork.com) - Fifth-seeded Pablo Cuevas was a hard- fought, first-round winner Monday at the Brasil Open.

The Uruguayan snuck past Czech Jiri Vesely 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 at this clay court event.

Spaniard Nicolas Almagro, who captured this event back-to-back in 2011 and 2012 and won it three times overall, defeated Blaz Rola 7-6 (7-3), 6-4 to advance to the second round.

Albert Ramos-Vinolas was also a first-round victor after defeating Guilherme Clezar 7-5, 7-5.

The top seeds in Sao Paulo are Spaniards Feliciano Lopez and Tommy Robredo.

Argentine Federico Delbonis beat Italian Paolo Lorenzi in last year's Sao Paulo final.

This week's winner will collect $80,850.