The last time the BNP Paribas Open was played, Iga Swiatek lost in qualifying. More than 30 months later, now the No. 2 seed and a Grand Slam champion, she cruised in her tournament main-draw debut. Swiatek needed just 71 minutes Friday to defeat Petra Martic 6-1, 6-3 in the California desert.

Though she was denied a first-set bagel, Swiatek won nine of the first 10 games against the World No.45 in their first meeting.

From there, the second set proved more complex for Swiatek, where Martic broke her twice after falling behind 6-1, 3-0 and later denied her an opportunity to serve out victory. But with a forehand winner — her 19th overall winner of the match — Swiatek broke Martic for the sixth time in eight return games to move safely through to the third round.

"In 2019, I wasn't playing that confident, but I'm really happy that times have changed now," Swiatek in her on-court interview. "There are many places [I haven't played] because I couldn't finish my season in 2019, and last year, we only had six tournaments, so it's pretty exciting.

"I think I gave a lot of power to my shots, and that was the key. She can play great topspin, and as soon as she's going to get good pace, she can do that. This surface is slow, so the topspin is jumping high. I just wanted to be aggressive from the beginning and not let her play her game.

"In the second set, I lost focus for one game and she broke me pretty fast, so I knew I just had to keep going and not stop for a second time."

Swiatek advances to a meeting with No. 25 seed Veronika Kudermetova, who came through an all-Russian affair against Liudmila Samsonova, 6-2, 6-3.

Former champion Simona Halep makes winning return

While Swiatek was making her debut, No. 11 seed Halep kicked off her 10th appearance in the desert with a 7-6(2), 6-1 win over Ukrainian Marta Kostyuk. A tight opening set gave way to an easy finish for Halep.

The match was already notable for Halep when it began, as it was her first since she announced a split with her longtime coach Darren Cahill late last month. Down a break early in the first set at 3-1, Halep served to stay in the opener twice before cruising in the ensuing tiebreak. 

After winning six of the first seven points in the breaker, and five straight from 1-1, Halep wrapped up the first set in an hour. Later, she broke twice in the second set to secure victory in 93 minutes. 

"Always when I come back here, I feel great. It's really nice to be healthy again and to compete at this level. Playing in October here, it's so special," Halep said. 

"I missed a lot playing tennis at this level this year because I've been injured and many months, I couldn't play matches. I came here a little more aggressive than normal and I'm trying to improve my game and myself. My attitude was not great but I'm going to keep working and it's just a pleasure to be back and to win a match at Indian Wells."