Evans beats British teenager Searle in Nottingham

 Great Britain's Dan Evans reached the third round of the Nottingham Open with a battling win over teenage compatriot Henry Searle.

Second seed Evans was well matched by the 18-year-old and after his 7-6 (7-4) 7-6 (7-5) win said the reigning Wimbledon junior champion will be "a hell of a player".

Searle, the current world number 630, is yet to make his debut at ATP Tour level, but underlined his potential in a tight contest.

"He's obviously very good," said Evans.

"I'm just happy to come through to be honest - it's not the draw I wanted to see when I saw I was next to his name."

Neither player was able to break serve in the opening set which Evans sealed with an ace at the end of a tense tie-break.

The British number three set up triple break point on Searle's first service game in the second but the teenager responded brilliantly to salvage a hold.

Searle then capitalised on his momentum to secure the first break of the match and led 3-2 after Evans sliced a drop shot into the net.

But Evans saved another break point at 4-3 and then broke back to 30 in the next game by returning two overhead smashes before Searle volleyed into the net.

Qualifier Searle faded in the second-set tie-break with Evans at one point leading 6-3 before getting over the line.

"Credit to him - he played great," added Evans. "He's going to be a hell of a player."

Evans has now won three of his four grass-court matches this summer as he builds up to Wimbledon which starts on 1 July.

British number one Katie Boulter is on court later on Wednesday, taking on Canadian Rebecca Marino.

Fellow Briton Heather Watson faces Czech sixth seed Karolina Pliskova.

In the Stuttgart Open, British number two Jack Draper plays American Marcos Giron.


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