Newport, RI (SportsNetwork.com) - Two-time champion John Isner and reigning titlist Nicolas Mahut notched opening-round victories Tuesday at the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships.
The top-seeded crowd favorite Isner got past fellow American Wayne Odesnik 6-3, 7-6 (8-6), while the fourth-seeded Frenchman Mahut foiled Argentine Facundo Arguello 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 on the grass courts on the grounds of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. The 6-foot-10 Isner fired 19 aces past Odesnik, while Mahut popped 11 in besting Facundo Arguello.
The two-time finalist Mahut overcame former world No. 1 and two-time runner- up Lleyton Hewitt in last year's Newport finale, while Isner captured back- to-back titles here in 2011 and 2012.
Meanwhile, eighth-seeded Frenchman Adrian Mannarino handled Taiwan's Jimmy Wang 6-2, 6-4.
Additional first-round wins came for Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky, Croat Ante Pavic and Aussie Luke Saville.
This week's champion will claim $81,500.