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Ivo Karlovic: The Biofile

Karlovic© AFP/Getty ImagesIvo Karlovic was inspired to play tennis by Boris Becker.

Croatia's Ivo Karlovic reveals his favourite ice cream flavor, his closest friends on the ATP World Tour, his greatest on-court moments and more in this Biofile with Scoop Malinowski.

Tennis Inspiration: It was probably Boris Becker.

First Tennis Memory: When I was young my dad, Vlado, said that I was going to be involved in some sports. And he said that it would be tennis because you don't really get injured. So he dragged me to the tennis court. And I was like, 'No, no, no. I don’t want to go.' [Smiles.] But after that, I liked it so I stayed with it.

Pre-Match Feeling: I try to stay relaxed and not have a lot of pressure on me. And I try to have fun.

First Job: Job? [Smiles.] Tennis.

Current Car: I have a Benz and Escalade. They are almost the only cars that I can actually fit in.

Favourite Ice Cream Flavor: Chocolate.

Favourite Meal: I like lamb when it’s really nicely cooked.

Greatest Sports Moment: Every day that I win is an unbelievable feeling. The greatest highlight of my career - that's a tough question. Wow. I've had so many good moments. I don't know which one is the highlight now.

Beating [defending champion] Lleyton Hewitt at Wimbledon - that was my first win to let me know I could do it. It was definitely a highlight. But there were also other good matches, like when I beat Roger Federer [in Cincinnati]. Also when I won tournaments coming back from injury.


Most Painful Moment: Every day, if I lose, it's an unbelievable feeling.

Favourite Tournaments: I like to play Washington, which is really nice. I like that area, it’s really nice. Also Wimbledon, New York and Miami.

Closest Friends On The ATP World Tour: There is [Victor] Hanescu, [Jan] Hernych.

Funniest Players Encountered: Goran Ivanisevic had to be one of them. Lovro Zovko also.

Toughest Competitors Encountered: Probably Roger, Rafa and Roddick, I think.

Why You Love Playing Tennis: I don't know. I don't know what else to do with myself. [Smiles.]

Interesting Fact: When I was 16, I was a practising boxing a little bit. It was only amateur. I was never actually in the ring but I liked it. And because of my long arms, the trainer who had this local club was really, really interested in me changing sports, from tennis to boxing. But it didn’t happen.

Qualities Most Admired: Honesty and unselfishness.

Childhood Dream: To become a Grand Slam winner.

Funny Tennis Memory: This lady said, ‘Oh my God, you are so tall, you can be a rower.’ So it was an unusual comment [smiles]. In the U.S. they always ask me if I'm a basketball player. So I answer 'Yes.' I don't want to make them sad.

Courtesy of Scoop Malinowski, tennis-prose.com

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