Newport, 10 July 2013 | AAP/AP

Lleyton Hewitt has made light work of compatriot Matthew Ebden in their first round Hall of Fame Tennis Championships match with a 6-4 6-1 win.

Former finalist and No.4 seed Hewitt was largely untroubled by Ebden in converting five of seven break points on Tuesday.

The former world No.1 said the tournament was a grasscourt event he always enjoyed.

“I made a massive improvement in the week I was here last year, and I got a lot more confident with the matches I played back-to-back,” Hewitt told the ATP website.

“I went to the Olympics straight after here and played fantastic, played as well as I played in a long time. That got my year back on track.”

Things didn’t improve for Marinko Matosevic after he was forced to retire with food poisoning in his match against America’s Jack Sock.┬áMatosevic was forced to call it a day after losing the first set 6-2.