America's Pete Sampras, arriving for his first appearance in four years at the Hamburg Open, defeated compatriot Chris Woodruff in two hard-fought sets to set up a second-round tie with France's Arnaud di Pasquale.
Top-seed Sampras who admitted that he was actually enjoying himself in his first tournament back after a thigh injury, defeated the challenger (6-4, 7-6).
"It was pretty warm. I didn't expect it coming to Hamburg. The last time I was here it was snowing!" laughed the former world number one, who hopes to use the $2.95 million as a springboard towards capturing the French Open crown - the only Grand Slam still to elude him.
"The weather has been nice all week. I hope it stays that way," said Sampras, who is top seed here in the absence of reigning Roland Garros champion Andre Agassi.
If Sampras defeats di Pasquale he could face either tenth-seeded Aussie youngster Lleyton Hewitt, whom he beat in three sets on the way to winning Miami earlier this year, or British eighth seed Tim Henman in the quarter-finals.
Third-seeded Magnus Norman advanced past Thomas Johansson (6-2, 6-4) whereas fifth seeded Gustavo Kuerten rallied to defeat Karim Alami (5-7, 6-2, 6-3) and ninth seeded Alex Corretja moved by Franco Squillari (6-3, 6-2).
13th-seeded Younes El Aynaoui defeated Stephane Huet (6-3, 3-6, 6-4)and number 15th-seeded Juan Carlos Ferrero won the last six points in the tiebreaker to beat Carlos Moya (3-6, 6-2, 7-6).
Defending champion Marcelo Rios advanced to the second round over Nicholas Escude (6-4, 6-1) - (Several Sources)
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