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Melzer beats Isner in Rome opener

Rome, Italy ( - Jurgen Melzer upset ninth-seeded American John Isner in the opening round on Sunday at the $4 million Italian Masters.

Melzer withstood 13 aces from the hard-serving Isner and saved seven of eight break points in a 7-6 (9-7), 6-3 win at Foro Italico. The Austrian returned last month after a shoulder injury sidelined him at the start of the season.

Tommy Robredo was the only other seeded player in action on Day 1 of this clay court French Open tune-up. The 16th-seeded Spaniard advanced with a 7-6 (7-3), 6-4 win over Argentine Juan Monaco.

Czech Radek Stepanek, Frenchman Jeremy Chardy, Kazakhstan's Mikhail Kukushkin and German Philipp Kohlschreiber also were first-round winners.

Seven-time champion Rafael Nadal beat three-time runner-up Roger Federer in last year's marquee final in Rome.

05/11 14:09:31 ET