A stern test though awaits Somdev as he next faces world number 34 Spaniard Feliciano Lopez, who got a bye in his opening round.
Somdev has beaten a few top-100 players after making a comeback this season. Victories against world No 39 Benoit Paire and 78th ranked Bjorn Phau are a few memorable ones.
In the match against Donskoy, Somdev saved six break chances in the opening set but failed on one occasion and that let the Russian run away with the lead and the momentum.
In the second set, the players traded breaks and Somdev prevailed in the tie-breaker.
In the deciding third set, Somdev saved all three breakpoints and converted two of the five chances to move to the next level.
In doubles, seventh seeds Leander Paes and Michael Llodra will open their campaign against Kas Christopher and Philipp Kohlschreiber.
The third-seeded pair of Mahesh Bhupathi and Daniel Nestor have been drawn against Richard Gasquet and Edouard Roger-Vasselin.
Rohan Bopanna and Rajeev Ram face Eric Butorac and Paul Hanley in the opening round.
Hewitt moves up James Blake advanced to the second round with a 6-2, 6-2 win over fellow American Ryan Harrison. Two-time Grand Slam winner Lleyton Hewitt also won his opening match, topping Joao Sousa of Portugal 6-1, 7-6 (3).