Former Top 20 Player Ivo Karlovic To Retire - UBITENNIS
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Former Top 20 Player Ivo Karlovic To Retire

Known by the nickname Dr. Ivo, the veteran tennis player is reportedly set to walk away from the sport permanently in a couple months time.

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Croatia’s Ivo Karlovic is set to pull the plug on his career later this season after playing on the ATP Tour for 20 years.

 

The 42-year-old will play his final tournament at the US Open in September where he reached the fourth round back in 2016. Karlovic has been ranked as high as 14th in the world but is currently 200 in the standings. So far this year he has won just two Tour matches against Pablo Andiujar in Delray Beach and Bernabe Zapata Miralles in Newport.

Karlovic’s retirement has been confirmed by Geoffrey Fernandez who is the tournament director of the Los Cabos Open where Karlovic has been given a wildcard to play. Fernandez made the announcement during the draw ceremony over the weekend.

“Ivo Karlovic told us that he will retire at the US Open and we are grateful to him, we are very fond of him for being our first champion. It is good and deserved to see him off like this,” he said.

There has been no official comment from Karlovic regarding his future plans. He is the oldest man currently in the ATP top 500 and holds the record for the tallest player event to be ranked inside the top 20 at 6’11”.

“I don’t feel any weaker or slower, even though I didn’t compete a lot in the past year. I’m 42 years old, but I feel pretty much the same as I did 10 years ago,” Karlovic told ATPTour.com earlier this month. “It’s just a matter of motivation and being able to win matches. Tennis-wise and physically, I’m the same. “Even when people ask me my age, I go backwards. Next birthday, I’ll be 41.”

During his career the Croat has reached 19 ATP finals where he has won eight titles. In the Grand Slams his best performance occurred at the 2009 Wimbledon Championships, where he reached the quarter-finals before losing to Roger Federer. He has also reached the semi-finals of the Cincinatti Masters and won the Davis Cup title. Lass year at the Australian Open he became the oldest man to win a main draw match since Ken Rosewall back in 1978.

In Los Cabos Karlovic, who won the title back in 2016, will play fifth seed Jordan Thompson in the first round.

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Carlos Alcaraz reaches his first ATP Tour final in Umag

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Spanish Next Gen star Carlos Alcaraz secured a spot in his first ATP tour-level final with a 6-2 7-6 (7-3) at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open in Umag. 

 

Alcaraz has become the youngest ATP Tour finalist since 18-year-old Kei Nishikori won the Delray Beach title in 2008. 

Alcaraz broke twice to open up a 4-0 lead and held his next service games to close out the first set 6-2. 

Ramos Vinolas came back from a break down three times in the second set, when Alcaraz served for the match. Alcaraz battled through the second-set tie-break to clinch the win after two hours. 

Alcaraz set up a final against Richard Gasquet, who battled past German qualifier Daniel Altmeier 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 6-3 after three hours and 11 minutes. 

Gasquet has become the second oldest finalist in tournament history. The 35-year-old saved seven of hi sten break points, but he converted just just 3 of his 17 break points.  

Gasquet rallied from a break down twice to draw level to 4-4 before winning the tie-break 7-2. Altmeier converted his third break point in the eighth game to win the second set 6-3. Altmeier saved three break points in the second game, before Gasquet converted his second break point in the sixth game to win the second set 6-3. 

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Novak Djokovic Cruises Past Dellien In Olympics Opener

Novak Djokovic’s bid for a historic golden slam continued in Tokyo.

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Novak Djokovic (@ITFTennis - Twitter)

Novak Djokovic cruised past Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2 to open his bid for a gold medal at the Olympics.

 

The world number one’s bid to achieve the golden slam is on after thrashing the Bolivian in humid conditions.

A perfect start for the Serbian who is looking to achieve the one thing he is yet to achieve and that’s win a gold medal.

Next for Djokovic will be Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff.

In 32C temperatures, Djokovic was looking to start his campaign off against Bolivian veteran Hugo Dellien.

The slow paced courts would suit Dellien as he engaged in some long rallies with the world number one early on.

Despite creating three break points in the fourth game, Djokovic would fail to break early on.

However Djokovic increased his level mixing up the pace and depth of his shots to create angles for simple winners.

On his fifth break point Djokovic would break for a 4-2 lead and the top seed would break for a second time as Dellien had no answers for the Serb’s defensive skills. First set to Djokovic in 33 minutes.

A similar pattern evolved in the second set only this time Djokovic did get a break in the fourth game, breaking to love.

Accurate serving and construction of points gave Djokovic an easy first round match as another break secured the match and sealed his spot into the second round.

A fine performance in tough conditions gave Djokovic’s bid for history the best possible start.

Next for Djokovic will be Jan-Lennard Struff who beat Thiago Monteiro 6-3 6-4.

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Brandon Nakashima shocks John Isner to reach first ATP final in Los Cabos

Brandon Nakashima stunned John Isner to reach the final in Los Cabos.

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Brandon Nakashima (@AbiertoLosCabos - Twitter)

The American became the youngest American to reach a final outside the US since Andy Roddick back in 2001.

 

Brandon Nakashima booked his spot in the final beating an out of sorts John Isner 7-5, 6-4 in one hour and 28 minutes firing 12 aces and winning 82% points with his first serve.

“It’s always going to be tough playing against him, It’s always so hard to return his serve and try to get into the rallies with him but I tried to get back as many returns as I could and there was blocking or chipping the return or hitting over it and just try to mix it up a lot while getting different looks and I knew when I had the opportunities and when I got close in games I knew I had to take advantage of that as much as possible so luckily I was able to do it and of course taking care of my service games was important as well”.

For the first six games of the opening set, neither player had an issue holding serve but at 3-3, it was the San Diego native with the first chance to break but was denied by the world number 39’s big serve.

At 5-4, the world number 134 had two more chances to break and he got the crucial break and served out the first set.

Winning the first set seemed to invigorate the 19-year-old and he earned an early chance to break in the first game of the second set and broke to take a 1-0 lead. Once again that one break was enough to serve out the match and seal the victory.

After the match, Nakashima spoke about becoming the first American player to reach a final outside the US since Andy Roddick back in 2001.

“It feels great and it’s a big accomplishment for me and of course all the Americans, we like to play in the US but it’s nice to see that I am playing well outside the US and luckily it’s not too far from my home here so I have been enjoying it here a lot both on and off the court and really looking forward to playing tomorrow again”.

Nakashima will face the number one seed Cameron Norrie in the final and can feel confident as the last time these two players met, the American beat him.

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