(Reuters) - Rafael Nadal beat Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-3 6-3 in the Brisbane International first round on Tuesday to make a successful return to action following two-and-a-half months out due to injury.
The Spanish former world number one, seeded fifth, made a sluggish start and fell 3-1 down in the first set against his Ukrainian opponent.
But Nadal, 30, won four successive games to clinch the opening set and the 14-times grand slam winner broke twice in the second to see off 2012 Brisbane finalist Dolgopolov in one hour 15 minutes. He will next play Germany's Mischa Zverev.
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In the women's draw, Spanish fourth seed Garbine Muguruza saved a match point before beating 19-year-old Russian Daria Kasatkina 7-5 3-6 7-6(7) to reach the last eight where she will face Destanee Aiava or twice grand slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova.
Australian 16-year-old Aiava upset American Bethanie Mattek-Sands 2-6 6-3 6-4 to become the first player born after the year 2000 to win a WTA main draw match.
World number six Karolina Pliskova crushed American qualifier Asia Muhammad 6-1 6-4 to set up a quarter-final meeting with eighth seed Roberta Vinci or Japan's Misaki Doi.
(Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond)