Rome - Andy Murray took revenge for a loss a year ago at the ATP-WTA Rome Masters as he defeated Marcel Granollers on Wednesday to open with a 6-2, 7-5 victory into the third round.
The Spaniard had benefitted in 2013 when the Scot had to quit their second-round contest with the back pains which eventually drove him to surgery last autumn.
The seventh-seeded Murray will next face resurgent Austrian Jurgen Melzer, who beat Marin Cilic 6-2, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3 as a return from injury starts to pay off with results.
Murray spent just under 90 minutes in holding off Granollers, whom he also defeated on hardcourt last August in Canada.
The Scot advanced on a second match point when his opponent put a forehand long.
Murray holds a solid 5-0 lead over Melzer, with the pair last meeting in the 2011 Australian Open.
Murray, playing Rome for the ninth time, is trying to kick-start his delayed clay season which began only last week with a win and a loss in Madrid. His best showing in Rome was a 2011 semi-final.
In women's second-round play, Polish third seed Agnieszka Radwanska defeated Argentine Paola Ormaechea 6-3, 6-2 while former Roland Garros finalist Samantha Stosur defeated Russian Elena Vesnina 6-2, 6-3.
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x3) bt Paola Ormaechea (ARG) 6-3, 6-2
Samantha Stosur (AUS) bt Elena Vesnina (RUS) 6-2, 6-3
Christina McHale (USA) bt Camilla Giorgi (ITA) 1-6, 6-3, 6-1
Andy Murray (GBR x7) bt Marcel Granollers (ESP) 6-2, 7-5
Jurgen Melzer (AUT) bt Marin Cilic (CRO) 6-2, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3