1ST LEAD: Murray warms to the task with comeback win over Monaco
Miami - Andy Murray took a set to get adjusted to the baseline backboard game of Juan Monaco before emerging from his first meeting with the Argentine a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 winner at the Miami Masters on Saturday.
The fourth seed from Britain, losing finalist last weekend at Indian Wells to Rafael Nadal, had his troubles in the first set as 59th-ranked Monaco got everything back and broke Murray twice in the process.
But once Murray settled in, his big game got the best of the situation, moving him into the third round after a bye with 33 winners in two hour, 14 minutes.
Murray now stands 5-3 in Miami, his off-season training base where he spent a month working on fitness last December with his team.
Murray is an impressive 21-2 this season with titles already earned at Doha and Rotterdam, where he beat Nadal.
Two Spanish seeds moved through, as number 8 Australian Open semi-finalist Fernando Verdasco beat German Benjamin Becker 6-3, 6-4 and number 11 David Ferrer overcame American John Isner 6-3, 3-6, 6-2.
Serb Viktor Troicki toppled 14th seed David Nalbandian as the Argentine's patchy form produced a second opening-match loss in the past three tournaments.
Unfancied Federico Gil of Portugal felled Croatian serving giant Ivo Karlovic 6-4, 6-4 while Spain's Feliciano Lopez beat another young American in Sam Querrey, 6-7 (5-7), 7-5, 6-2.
Women's top seed Serena Williams played her first match in nearly a month, moving through 6-2, 6-3 over fellow-American Alexa Glatch.
The world number one was back on court after completing her annual pout by skipping this month's other big event in Indian Wells, where she and her sister Venus claim racial discrimination due to crowd jeers nearly a decade ago.
The 2001 incident still burns brightly for the Williams pair, who have vowed never to return to the California desert despite losing hundreds thousands of dollars in various sanctions from the WTA.
The Florida-based sister are in their element in Miami, where Serena has won five titles including the last two editions.
Coming off a first-round bye, the top seed overwhelmed the teenaged Glatch, ranked 124, firing a dozen winners and breaking the 19-year-old six times.
"I think I played okay, but I definitely could have played better," said Williams. "I had a few little jitters going out there."
Williams plays a sparse schedule by choice in defiance of WTA regulations to try and impose consistency on the top 10. She is competing in only her fifth event of the season where she won the Australian Open.
Polish 10th-seed Agnieszwa Radwanska advanced over Thai veteran Tamarine Tanasugarn, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, while French 14th seed Alize Cornet put out Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova 6-4, 7-6 (7-4).
China posted a victory hat-trick as Li Na, Peng Shuai and Zheng Zie all advanced.
Li beat Canadian Aleksandra Wozniak 7-5, 6-3, Peng stopped Marta Santangelo 7-5, 6-3 and Zheng defeated German Julia Goerges 6-4, 6-2 in a preview of an upcoming Fed Cup tie. (dpa)