Leander Paes and his Pakistani partner Aisam Qureshi made a solid start to their men's doubles campaign and advanced to the second round of the USD 3,80,000 Kingfisher Airlines Tennis Open today.
The Indo-Pak duo dispatched Paraguay's Ramon Delgado and Greece's Konstantinos Economidis 6-4, 6-4 at the CCI courts here.
Paes and Qureshi found the going comfortable under lights against the Europeans and cantered home in style for an intriguing next found meeting with the third seeded Indo-Croatian pair of Mahesh Bhupathi and Mario Ancic.
"I am very happy with the way Aisam played today. He was serving very well and I am looking forward to our toughest match of the tournament on Friday (against Bhupathi and Ancic)," said a visibly happy Paes after the tie.
Paes and Qureshi decided to combine forces after Martin Damm, the Indian's partner in winning the US OPen doubles title this August, decided to skip the event.
Earlier, 16-year-old Indian wild card recipient Akash Wagh went down in straight sets to his much superior first round rival Dmitry Tursenov of Russia to signal the end of India's lukewarm challenge in the singles event.
The left-handed Wagh, a trainee at the Mahesh Bhupathi Academy in Bangalore but hailing from Pune, put up a gallant display before bowing out 2-6, 5-7 in one hour to Russia's 24-year-old recent Davis Cup hero and fourth seed Tursenov in a first round encounter.