The British No 1 was down a set, 4-4 and 0-40 on his serve before coming through to beat the Czech 4-6, 7-6, 6-4. His fightback, due largely to some dynamic serving, meant he avoided a third successive opening match defeat as prepares for the US Open.
Henman delivered just when it mattered, sending down one of his fastest- ever serves at 130mph. That helped him to a second set tie-break which he dominated after two early points went against serve, then an immediate break at the start of the third set put him in control. Henman now faces New Zealand's Brett Steven, who reached the last 16 at Wimbledon last month. The Kiwi recorded a surprise victory against the American Jim Courier.
The British No 2, Greg Rusedski, within three places of Henman in the world rankings at No 24, faces a second-round match today against American wild-card Jeff Salzenstein.
Andre Agassi, the former world No 1 now ranked 74 in the world, ended a losing streak of more than three months by beating the Italian Davide Sanguinetti 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 in the RCA Championships in Indianapolis.Reuse content