Sweeting and Russell through to round two in Houston

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The defending champion Ryan Sweeting started the Houston Tennis Tournament with a 6-3  7-6 (6) win over the Brazilian qualifier Ricardo Mello.

Sweeting, who won the Houston title last year with a final victory against Kei Nishikori of Japan, had to save two set points at 5-6 in the second set against the Brazilian. The American didn’t let Mello back in the match and after winning the tiebreak, he set up a second round clash against either Ivo Karlovic or Bobby Reynolds.

Another American Michael Russell booked his place in the second round, beating the Spaniard Daniel Gimeno-Traver 2-6  7-5  6-1.

In round two, Russel will play no.1 seed Mardy Fish, who had a first round bye.

Also through to the next round is Paolo Lorenzi of Italy, defeating Wayne Odesnik 6-7 (3)  6-2  6-3 and the Argentine qualifier Horacio Zeballos, who overcame the Romanian Adrian Ungur 6-3  6-3.

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