Mikhail Kukushkin lost only 30 points over the second and third sets in taking a 6-7 (3-7), 6-1, 6-0 first-round decision from Chardy. Kukushkin saved two of four break points he faced but all were in the first set. He dropped only seven points on serve in the final two sets.
Chardy had eight aces but also was called for eight double faults. Kukushkin finished with eight breaks in Chardy's 13 service games.
Teymuraz Gabashvili also advanced to the second round, getting by Filippo Volandri 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. Gabashvili won behind a pair of breaks in each the second and third sets.
Monday's third match saw Michael Russell defeat Igor Andreev 6-1, 7-5. Russell dropped serve twice, once when serving for the match at 5-4. He answered that with his fifth break of the day and then served out the match.
The $663,750 St. Petersburg Open continues through Sunday.