AUCKLAND (Reuters) - Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber overcame a slow start to advance to the second round of the Auckland Classic with a 2-6 6-3 6-1 victory over Argentina's Carlos Berlocq.
The 2008 champion was the only seeded player to appear in the singles on Monday, and it looked like he may be on an early flight to the practice courts in Melbourne for next week's Australian Open after the 66th-ranked Berlocq won the first set.
Kohlschreiber got back into the match early in the second with a service break to send it into a decider and then ran away with the third despite a brief wobble in the final game when Berlocq held a break point at 30-40.
Spain's Tommy Robredo, who made the final on the central Auckland courts in 2007, was forced into a unexpected battle against New Zealand wildcard Michael Venus in an earlier match.
The 23-year-old Venus, who is ranked 330th in the world, delighted the home crowd by taking the first set in a tiebreak, but after the former world number five took the second with the only break of the set it was one way traffic in the third.
Venus won just five points in the third set and Robredo won the match 6-7 6-3 6-0 in just under 96 minutes.
The other seeded players, Thomaz Bellucci, Juan Monaco and David Nalbandian will all play their first round matches on Tuesday.
(Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Alastair Himmer)