Eighth seed Marat Safin deflated the ego of last weekend's Indianapolis winner Robby Ginepri with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 come from behind win to reach the second round of the Los Angeles Open on Tuesday.
Safin, who last won a match in the first round at Roland Garros nearly two months ago, lifted his own spirits as he made a respectable showing in what is meant to be his final season in the game at age 29.
Safin was fresh from an exhibition win 24 here hours earlier against Pete Sampras.
"If you beat Pete Sampras you know you have a good chance of beating Robby Ginepri," he joked.
"Robby is playing really well, coming from a title last week. He's a tough player. The match was well-played from both of us. I got up a break in the beginning of the second set and that helped me to turn the match around."
The Russian winner, a two-time grand Slam champion, notched eight aces and broke number 56 Ginepri five times while losing his own serve on four occasions.
American Ginepri repeated history on Sunday as he duplicated his Indianapolis title from 2005 and came to LA as a special exempt entry.
Marcos Baghdatis, a finalist at the 2006 Australian Open, claimed his first ATP victory in a month with a 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 first-round decision over Canada's Frank Dancevic.
The smiling Cypriot who was carried off court on a stretcher in the Netherlands with a knee injury the week before Wimbledon, came good after going out in the first round last week in Indianapolis as he began his summer hardcourt season.
Baghdatis is playing the event for the second time since 2005, when he lost in the first round to Juan Chela.
The world number 146 will line up against big-hitting American John Isner, who upset German fifth seed Benjamin Becker 7-6 (10/8), 7-6 (7/3).
Dancevic, a special exempt entry, was coming off a semi-final at Indy, where he lost to Sam Querrey.
Russian fifth seed Igor Kunitsyn stopped Indian qualifier Somdev Devvarman 7-5, 6-2. Ernests Gulbis, loser of eight of his previous ten matches dating to late April, advanced over Taiwan's Lu Yen-hsun 7-5, 6-2.
Number 205-ranked qualifier Carsten Ball joined fellow Australian Chris Guccione in the second round as he beat Frenchman Marc Gicquel 6-2, 7-5 (8/6). The Aussie next plays third seed Dkitry Tursunov of Russia.
American Ryan Sweeting inflicted 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 pain on compatriot Taylor Dent, whose comeback after back surgeries and three compromised seasons continued to hit the wall.