Australian Arina Rodionova came through two tie-breaks to see off home hope Liu Chang in the first round of the WTA event in Zhengzhou.
Rodianova, ranked 205 in the world, prevailed 7-6 (7-2) 7-6 (7-4).
The 27-year-old Russian-born right-hander faces third seed Duan Ying-ying in the next round.
China's Han Xinyun was defeated by Zarina Diyas to be the only seeded player to be eliminated in the first round.
Seventh seed Han slumped to a 6-2 6-0 defeat to the 23-year-old Kazakh player.
Only one of the 16 first-round matches went to a third set, with seven of Tuesday's contests in China settled in straight sets.
The exception was Sabina Sharipova's 6-4 3-6 6-4 victory against qualifier Kang Jiaqi which lasted two hours 17 minutes.
Fifth seed Zheng Saisai strolled past Lu Jiajing 6-2 6-2 while Kurumi Nara, seeded sixth, battled to a 6-4 7-5 win against Zhu Lin.
Nara's fellow Japanese players Shiho Akita and Riko Sawayanagi are also through, seeing off compatriots Mayo Hibi and Miyu Kato respectively.
Jang Su-jeong beat fellow South Korean Han Na-lae 6-4 6-1.