Sixth seed David Ferrer secured his place in the third round of the Rome Masters with a 6-3 7-6 victory over compatriot Fernando Verdasco.
Ferrer took the opening set 6-3 with a clinical break of serve as he seized control of the match at the Supertennis Arena.
Verdasco raised his level in the second set and ensured that it went to a tie-break, but Ferrer outclassed his countryman in losing just three points as he closed out the match in convincing fashion.
The two players had exchanged breaks of serve at the start of the second set, but Verdasco never looked likely to conquer the sixth seed, whose consistent serve and guile from the back of the court saw him control the majority of the match.
Ferrer will next take on either Guillermo Garcia-Lopez , a 6-4 6-1 winner over Pablo Andujar in the first round, or Gilles Simon , who beat Donald Young 6-2 7-5.
Elsewhere, number 13 seed Gael Monfils was upset by Juan Carlos Ferrero in straight sets 7-5 6-3.
The Frenchman started in dominant fashion, but faded in the humid conditions as the match wore on.
Ferrero took advantage by stretching his opponent around the court in an impressive fight-back, and will now meet either Argentina's Carlos Berlocq or Madrid Masters winner Roger Federer in the third round.
Monfils's compatriot Jo-Wilfried Tsonga encountered no such resistance in seeing off Viktor Troicki 6-3 6-2 and will meet Juan Martin Del Potro who ousted Michael Llodra 7-5 3-6 6-4 while 14th seed Juan Monaco completed a 6-2 6-2 win over Romanian qualifier Adrian Ungur .
Marcel Granollers overcame 15th seed Feliciano Lopez 6-4 6-4 with Richard Gasquet , the 16th seed, downing Jurgen Melzer 6-1 7-6(6).
Sam Querrey beat Jarkko Nieminen 7-6 5-7 6-4 and Lukasz Kubot eclipsed Potito Starace 6-3 5-7 6-2 to complete the day's results in the men's draw.