Second-seeded Thomas Johansson of Sweden defeated Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3, 6-4 Tuesday to advance to the second round of the St. Petersburg Open.
In a rematch of the last season's final, defending champion Mikhail Youzhny of Russia made it into the second round when Karol Beck of Slovakia retired with a right-knee injury.
Fourth-seeded Youzhny, who beat Beck in straight sets last season to claim his second career title, won four consecutive games to win the first set 6-4. He was leading 4-1 in the second when Beck retired.
Johansson, the 1997 champion, served eight aces and had a break in each set to win his match against Kohlschreiber in 66 minutes.
Earlier, fifth-seeded Nicolas Kiefer of Germany rallied in the third set to beat Spain's Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-3, 3-6, 6-4.
Kiefer, ranked 29th, had two breaks in the opening set and was leading 3-2 in the second before Garcia-Lopez won four consecutive games to even the match.
A break down in the third set, the German evened the match at 3 then capitalized on the Spaniard's double fault in the ninth game to win the match, AP reports.