Maria Sharapova recovered from a poor second set to dump fellow Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova out of the Cincinnati Open in the first round on Tuesday night.
Kuznetsova, who claimed her 13th WTA Tour title with victory in the Mercury Insurance Open on Sunday, required treatment from her trainer early in the third set and was powerless to prevent Sharapova prevailing 6-4 1-6 6-2.
Top seed Jelena Jankovic of Serbia also overcame a second-set wobble to get past Russian qualifier Vera Dushevina 6-4 3-6 6-1 in their second-round encounter.
Three other Russians had no troubles advancing from their first-round clashes, though. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova beat Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia 6-3 6-4, Elena Vesnina defeated American Melanie Oudin and Maria Kirilenko thrashed Ukraine's Kateryna Bondarenko 6-1 6-3.
However, another Russian, 15th seed Nadia Petrova, retired due to heat illness while trailing American Christina McHale 7-6 (7/4) 5-3.
There were routine wins for 11th seed Flavia Pennetta and 12th seed Yanina Wickmayer, Italy's Pennetta ousting China's Jie Zheng 6-4 6-2 and Belgium's Wickmayer cruising past Hungarian Greta Arn 6-2 6-2.
Austria's Sybille Bammer, Argentina's Gisela Dulko and Germany's Andrea Petkovic also progressed.
In second-round action, Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan outclassed Serbia's Bojana Jovanovski 6-2 6-0 while Marion Bartoli, the 16th seed from France, saw off Ukraine's Alona Bondarenko 7-6 (7/4) 6-1.