Sydney, Australia – Fifth-seeded German Florian Mayer earned a straight-set victory over Joao Sousa, 6-1, 6-2, to advance to the second round at the Sydney International tennis event, a final Australian Open tune- up.
Mayer needed just under 50 minutes to dispose of the Portuguese qualifier on the hardcourts at Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre on Monday.
Eighth-seeded Spaniard Marcel Granollers dropped the first set against Australia's Matthew Ebden, but bounced back to take a 5-7, 7-5, 6-1 victory.
Frenchman Julien Benneteau, who lost to Finland's Jarkko Nieminen in last year's Sydney finale, started his bid for a second straight trip to the title match with a hard-fought 6-3, 5-7, 6-2 triumph over Pablo Andujar of Spain.
Also on Monday, Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin fought off Aussie James Duckworth for a 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3) victory to advance to the second round.