A bloodied Richie Hadlow beat Edrian Volcere, of the Seychelles, in a 4-1 split decision by the judges in the 64kg class at Oxenford Studios yesterday.
The Queenstowner, 30, was forced to absorb blows from the taller and longer-limbed Volcere but managed some clean blows while punching up in his Commonwealth Games debut.
Early in the second round Hadlow suffered a cut above his left eyebrow when the pair clashed heads. He was forced to have the cut treated twice in the round but it did not curb his aggressive attitude.
He finished the three rounds bleeding but confident he had done enough to win.
Hadlow will next fight Sri Lankan Dinindu Ponnawela Vidanalage Don, who got through to the second round courtesy of a bye.
Earlier in the day, Wellington fighter Leroy Hindley won his opening bout in the 69kg class.