Bernard Tomic has won his first ATP Tour match since bowing out of the Australian Open in the first round and sparking a war of words with Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt.
The Australian made short work of Lukas Lacko, dismantling the Slovak 6-4 6-2 in their opening-round encounter at the New York Open.
The world No.87 landed 71 per cent of his first serves and saved all three break points against him to wrap up the match in less than an hour.
"Those break points (at 1-2) were important because I felt like if he had have got that early and been up a break 3-1 it's a whole different story," Tomic told Tennis Atlantic.
"I felt like today I did the right things. I played pretty well and the courts and conditions suit me."
The 26-year-old said it was good to get back to winning ways for the first time since claiming his fourth ATP title in Chengdu, China, last September.
"Those matches in Kooyong kind of don't count," Tomic said.
"Obviously losing the (Australian Open) first round to (Marin) Cilic was a tough draw."
With the 2019 monkey off his back, Tomic is desperate for more court time as he seeks to regain match fitness.
"I need to start playing more. That's my goal for the next month," he said.
Tomic's win set up a second-round clash with top seed John Isner, who has a 2-0 record over the Australian.
While Tomic is focused on his game, Hewitt will play doubles in New York with teen sensation Alex Popyrin, who made a run to the last 32 at Melbourne Park but failed to make the main draw this week after a qualifying loss to Canadian Brayden Schnur.
Jordan Thompson finished off a good day for the Aussies with a hard-fought 6-7 (7-9) 7-5 6-1 defeat of local wildcard Noah Rubin.
The 24-year-old Thompson is in the same quarter of the draw as Tomic and will be favoured to make at least the last eight, guaranteed to face a qualifier in the second round.
The other first-round winner on Monday in New York was Paolo Lorenzi.