Wimbledon junior champion Henry Searle scores first Challenger win

17-year-old Henry Searle notched a milestone win in Glasgow

by Jovica Ilic
Wimbledon junior champion Henry Searle scores first Challenger win
© Stream screenshot

The 17-year-old Henry Searle notched his first Challenger victory at the Lexus Glasgow event, beating former world no. 35 Jiri Vesely 7-6, 6-4 in the first round. The reigning junior Wimbledon champion took down the more experienced player in an hour and 35 minutes, prevailing in the opener and sealing the deal with a single break in the second set.

Henry debuted at Challengers a week ago in Nottingham, falling to another young gun, Abdullah Shelbayh. Searle stepped in and earned a milestone win in Glasgow after prevailing in the pivotal moments. The young Briton took three points more than the Czech, defending all three break points in the only loose service game and making the difference with one break on his tally.

Henry Searle, Glasgow Challenger 2024© Stream screenshot

It was a fast and floating encounter on an indoor court, with quick exchanges and the servers' dominant role. A left-handed youngster closed the first game of the encounter with a service winner and fired another booming serve two games later for 2-1.

Vesely followed that pace, holding at love in game four and repeating that at 2-3 to remain on the positive side. Searle forced the rival's mistake for a hold at love in game seven, and Vesely punched a booming serve down the T line in the next one for 4-4.

Jiri served to stay in the set at 4-5 and painted a forehand winner for more drama. The young gun secured the 11th game with an ace, and the more experienced player mirrored that in the next one, introducing a tie break.

Henry Searle celebrated his first Challenger win in Glasgow.

Jiri led 2-0 before Henry pulled a mini-break back in the third point with a forehand crosscourt winner.

A teenager grabbed the fourth point with a volley winner and landed an unreturned serve for 3-2. The Briton punched a backhand crosscourt winner in the sixth point, extending his streak and earning another mini-break after the Czech's double fault.

Henry created four set points with a booming serve, and Jiri denied three to stay in touch. The home player seized the first with an ace down the T line, wrapping up the opener in style. They served well early in the second set, with Searle locking the result at 2-2 with a forehand winner.

Henry Searle, Glasgow 2024© Stream screenshot

The Czech faced issues behind the initial shot in the fifth game, hitting a double fault and offering the Briton three break chances, the first of the match. Henry clinched the second with a crafty lob and Jiri's tweener error, delivering a decisive break and moving in front.

Searle held with an ace in the sixth game, moving closer to the finish line. Vesely stepped in on the return in the eighth game, creating three break chances, his only of the match. The young gun denied them and closed the game with a volley winner, opening a 5-3 advantage.

Jiri served to stay in the match in game nine and wrapped it up with a booming serve to extend the battle. Henry served for the win at 5-4 and created three match points with a volley winner. The young gun seized the first with a service winner, sealing the deal in style and celebrating his first Challenger win at 17.