Andy Murray won a deciding set for the seventh time this season to reach the second round at Indian Wells.
The British former world number one defeated Tomas Etcheverry 6-7 (5-7) 6-1 6-4 in a match that lasted three hours and 12 minutes.
Murray had no fewer than 20 break points, 16 of which were saved by the 23-year-old Argentine.
“I really felt like I was in the driving seat for much of the match,” Murray told BBC Sport.
“I was creating lots of opportunities but I just wasn’t able to capitalise. I made some poor decisions at times, but in the end did really well to get through that.”
Etcheverry was the sharper man in a first set tie-break, which he won 7-5, and had a break point for a 2-1 lead in the second.
But Murray saved that break point before running away with the second set.
Both players had chances in the deciding set. Etcheverry had two break points at 4-3 but Murray saved them with some fine serving, then secured the decisive break in the next game as the Argentine double faulted.
“I’m not going to keep winning every three-set match that I play, but it’s been an amazing start to the year,” Murray continued.
“It was still a good effort to turn that around as the first set was extremely long and I was thinking ‘here we go again’.
“This is a place where I haven’t always played my best tennis so I was really happy that I managed to turn that around.”
Murray will play Spain’s world number 17 Pablo Carreno Busta in the second round on Saturday.
Murray’s victory came after 21-year-old compatriot Jack Draper thrashed Switzerland’s Leandro Riedi 6-1 6-1, to set up a second-round meeting with fellow Briton Dan Evans.
The left-hander had not played since mid-January when he lost to Spain’s Rafael Nadal at the Australian Open.
Showing no signs of the leg injury he had been dealing with, Draper looked sharp as he dismantled 135th-ranked Riedi’s serve.
Draper, ranked 56th, broke in six of his seven return games as well as dominating on his own serve.
Despite a seven-week lay-off, Draper showed why is one of the ATP Tour’s rising young stars by striking the ball confidently and consistently in an impressive performance.
The rapid win sets up an intriguing match against 24th seed Evans, who will surely provide a sterner test than Riedi did on his debut in an ATP Masters event.
Evans, 32, received a first-round bye in the Californian desert and the Davis Cup team-mates will play each other competitively for the first time later this week.
Speaking about Evans, Draper told BBC Sport: “He’s a really nice human being and whenever I’ve had moments where I’ve not felt great he’s always sent me a message, and I appreciate that from an older player.
“He definitely cares and it’s the same with Murray and [Cameron] Norrie – they’ve paved the way for me a little bit and they’ve always been supportive in my practice sessions and given me the confidence I’ve needed to get to this level quicker, so I’m very grateful to the likes of Dan.”