Andrea Petkovic broke six times to start her week at the Dubai Tennis Championships on Monday with a 6-2, 6-1 defeat of Italian Camila Giorgi as the German winner ended a two-match loss streak.
Petkovic could face new world number nine Bencic in the next round if she beats former number one Jelena Jankovic in the opening round.
"I'm very happy with how I played, I've worked hard over the past few weeks to be ready here and I was able to translate good training onto the match court," Petkovic said.
"All the work paid off, things are coming together for me."
"I didn't have the best head-to-head against her, but I'm finding the balance between consistency and going all out for your shots, coming in on the short ball - I think I did that quite well today.”
Makarova has been ranked as high as eight in singles and three in doubles, but a leg injury meant that she did not play after the US Open in September until she embarked upon a comeback in Australia last month.
So far she is still struggling to re-establish herself at the top level, and after dropping the opening set she surrendered a break of serve in the second to give Brengle victory in her debut appearance.
Elsewhere, world number 23 Andrea Petkovic comfortably saw off Italian Camila Giorgi in straight sets to advance to the second round of the tournament.
“I’m very happy with how I played, I’ve worked hard over the past few weeks to be ready here and I was able to translate good training onto the match court,” Petkovic said.
“All the work paid off, things are coming together for me.”
Petkovic said she had a close call after the end of last season, as she pondered her future in the game.
“I was in New York and thought about just staying there. But in the end I took my plane to Germany and began to work on my game,” she said.
“I’m happy I made the right decision to stay in tennis.”
The German eased to a 6-2, 6-1 win, Petkovic securing victory in a little over one hour.
In the qualifying matches , Yaroslava Shvedova battled her way into the main draw by edging past Denisa Allertova 6-4 4-6 7-6 in their final qualifier.
Tsvetana Pironkova also advanced into the main draw in another tense encounter by overcoming Anna-Lena Friedsam 5-7 7-5 6-3.
Life on the tennis tour may not be the best environment to foster friendships between players, but Spanish No. 3 seed Carla Suarez Navarro believes there is still room to have a pal or two.
Suarez Navarro’s compatriot and doubles partner Garbine Muguruza had said in an interview in El Pais it was difficult to have friends on tour and that “we all hate each other” referring to herself and her peers.
It was a statement that did not go down well with many players and surely must have come as a surprise to Suarez Navarro who has a close relationship with her compatriot.
Asked if she agreed with Muguruza, Suarez Navarro said: “It’s difficult to have friends, but I think that most players have one or two friends on tour. I know that players go on holidays together, I see some having dinner of lunch together. I know it’s not easy because you’re in competition all year but I think you can have one or two friends.
“It’s not easy. But a lot of players play doubles together and you have to spend time with the other player (your partner) and you have a different relation.
“Look at Serena (Williams) and (Caroline) Wozniacki. They play finals (against each other) and they are friends. I know it’s tough. I understand what Garbine wants to say but I also understand that you can have friends on tour.
“I have a good relation with Sara Errani, Flavia Pennetta, for sure the Spanish players… You know my English is not very good, it’s tough when I have to talk in English but I have a good relationship with a lot of players on tour.”
Suarez Navarro has a bye in the first round as a top-four seed and awaits the winner of the clash between Caroline Garcia and Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.
After suffering a dip in form last season, the 27-year-old is finding her way back and had a strong Australian Open, reaching the quarters.
“You know I had a few matches there where I lost the first set and had to work hard to come back. I learned from that and will try to start really well. Of course, the most important thing is how you finish the match but at this level you have to start well. That’s something I’ll take with me for the upcoming tournaments,” she said.