World champion Adrian Lewis avoided an upset by edging out Richie Burnett in the PartyPoker.com World Grand Prix in Dublin on Tuesday night.
However, two-time winner James Wade and double Dublin finalist Raymond van Barneveld were knocked out of the tournament as the first round concluded.
Lewis, the 2010 runner-up in the double-start tournament, looked set to cruise to victory in his clash with Burnett when he won the game's opening set without reply.
Burnett, a semi-finalist last year, edged the second set to force a decider, but Lewis was aided by a ten-dart finish as he took the set 3-1 to win his second round place.
"I didn't make it easy for myself but Richie came back well at me so I'm happy to get over the winning line," admitted Lewis.
"There had been a few results which people classed as shocks last night with the likes of Gary Anderson and Simon Whitlock going out, but the format's short and that played on my mind.
"If you don't start well and hit your doubles, you're out - but I'm through and I know for a fact I'll up my game. I missed a few times on double top and double 18 where I was dropping short and I've got to sort that out."
Two-time winner and world number three Wade, though, became the highest seed to be knocked out of the event with a shock 2-1 defeat to Colin Osborne.
Wade took five successive legs to move to the brink of victory, winning the opening set 3-1 and edging two legs clear in the second, only to miss a brace of match darts at tops.
Osborne took the second set's third leg and then finished tops and 108 to snatch the set, before winning the decider without reply for a win which could kick-start his challenge to return to the world's top 20.
Five-time World Champion Barneveld also exited as he lost out to Stoke's emerging star Ian White in straight sets.
Barneveld started confidently and took out 121 as he moved 2-0 up in the first set, only for White to finish 144 and 132 as well as whitewash the Dutchman in a leg where he failed to hit a starting double in 12 darts.
White also took out 112 to lead in the second set, and after Barneveld levelled the world number 37 took the next two on tops to complete a dream debut in the World Grand Prix.
"I've played Raymond before and beaten him but everyone on the circuit knows that I'm playing quite well at the moment and working my way up the rankings," said White, who also knocked Lewis out of the European Championship last month.
White will now play world number six Wes Newton in the second round, after the Fleetwood ace make a remarkable comeback to see off Ronnie Baxter 2-1.
Baxter had won the game's first five legs without reply before missing the bull to claim a whitewash victory - and Newton took six of the next seven to book his place in the last 16.
Dutch ace Michael van Gerwen also came from a set down to take victory as he saw off 2004 World Grand Prix champion Colin Lloyd 2-1, winning the final set of their showdown without reply to set up a second round clash with Lewis on Thursday.
Paul Nicholson dropped only two legs against Northern Ireland's Michael Mansell as he secured a clash with Osborne in the last 16.
Three-time quarter-finalist Andy Smith saw his dreams of glory ended by Steve Beaton as the former World Champion impressed with a straight sets win in their contest.
Beaton now plays Andy Hamilton, who also won in straight sets in his clash with Mark Webster, with finishes of 90 and 96 in the final two legs of the first set proving crucial in giving the Stoke ace the edge.
The second round begins on Wednesday night with four matches from the top half of the draw, including reigning champion Phil Taylor up against Robert Thornton in a repeat of June's UK Open final, which the Scot won.
Last year's World Grand Prix runner-up Brendan Dolan meets Dutchman Vincent van der Voort, Kevin Painter plays Justin Pipe and Dave Chisnall faces Mervyn King, with all games over the best of five sets.
Tickets for the PartyPoker.com World Grand Prix are still available in person from the Citywest Hotel Box Office on the day of the event, with only a small number of tickets remaining for Friday's quarter-finals and Saturday's semi-finals.