Tennis - Almagro moves through in Argentina

Nicolas Almagro eased to a straightforward first-round victory over Guido Pella at the Buenos Aires Open, the Spaniard winning 6-3 6-2.

Second seed Almagro has historically enjoyed success in this part of the ATP season, winning on the clay in Brazil last year before making the final of the tournament in Argentina.

In 2011, he won both Latin American tournaments, although at last week's Brazil Open in Sao Paulo he was ousted in the quarter-finals by eventual finalist David Nalbandian.

"This trip through Latin America has been very good for me in recent years," Almagro said. "But every year is different."

Claycourt specialist Almagro, ranked 11th in the world, won 78 per cent of his first-service points at the Buenos Aires Lawn Tennis Club while breaking his Argentine opponent four times to wrap up victory in just under an hour.

Top-seed and fellow Spaniard David Ferrer kicks off his campaign at the Copa Claro on Tuesday against Agustin Velotti.

In first-round action at the Memphis International, world number 12 Marin Cilic had to dig deep and battle back from a slow start to get the better of Ivan Dodig in a 4-6 6-2 6-3 win.

The top-seeded Croat dropped the opening set to his compatriot and friend Dodig, who crucially broke just once, but Cilic roared back in the second and third without further loss of serve to seal a place in the second round against either Juergen Melzer or Igor Sisling.

Second seed Milos Raonic, who won in San Jose last week, headlines the bottom half of the draw.

Buenos Aires Open first round results:

2-Nicolas Almagro (Spain) beat Guido Pella (Argentina) 6-3 6-2

Aljaz Bedene (Slovenia) beat 5-Horacio Zeballos (Argentina) 4-6 7-6(4) 6-3

8-Albert Ramos (Spain) beat Flavio Cipolla (Italy) 6-1 6-0

Diego Schwartzman (Argentina) beat 4-Thomaz Bellucci (Brazil) 6-4 4-6 6-1

Federico Delbonis (Argentina) beat Joao Sousa (Portugal) 6-1 6-4

Memphis International first round results:

1-Marin Cilic (Croatia) beat Ivan Dodig (Croatia) 4-6 6-2 6-3

Rhyne Williams (U.S.) beat Steve Johnson (U.S.) 7-6(4) 6-4

Lukasz Kubot (Poland) beat Ryan Harrison (U.S.) 6-4 6-7(4) 7-6(2)

Marseille Open first round results:

Bernard Tomic (Australia) beat 8-Martin Klizan (Slovakia) 4-6 6-3 7-6(7)

7-Jerzy Janowicz (Poland) beat Lukas Rosol (Czech Republic) 6-2 6-4