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Tomic Dethrones Karlovic In Bogota

Bogota, Colombia

Tomic© Claro Open ColombiaBernard Tomic won his second ATP World Tour title on Sunday.

Bernard Tomic took a significant step forward in his comeback campaign on the ATP World Tour, toppling defending champion Ivo Karlovic for the Claro Open Colombia title on Sunday.

Tomic prevailed 7-6(5), 3-6, 7-6(4) in two hours and 13 minutes for his second tour-level title, adding to a 2013 triumph at the Apia Sydney International (d. Anderson). The 21 year old completed a strong week in Bogota, winning consecutive matches for the first time since undergoing double hip surgery in late January.

The World No. 124 became the third player outside the Top 100 in the Emirates ATP Rankings to win a title this year, joining last week’s Bastad champion Pablo Cuevas and Munich titlist Martin Klizan. Both were ranked No. 111. In addition, Tomic is the first Australian champion in South America since Ken Rosewall triumphed in Buenos Aires in 1968.

Watch Final Highlights

Tomic overcame a serving barrage from Karlovic, who hammered 39 aces, just five shy of his three-set record established earlier this year in Zagreb. It was also the second-highest total in a tour-level final (since 1991), behind Roger Federer's 50 against Andy Roddick in 2009 at Wimbledon.

The young Aussie needed four championship points to put away the 6’11” Croat, who refused to be broken when facing a pair at 6-5 in the deciding set, and another in the ensuing tie-break. Tomic would hold his nerve on his fourth, catching a net-charging Karlovic out of position with a perfectly placed low dipping return to his feet.

"He's a very difficult player," said Tomic about Karlovic. "He won here last year. For me it was a difficult match. I kept trying and believing in myself. Against him, if you stop believing and trying he will beat you.

"It's my first tournament on hard courts since my surgeries in Australia. This title is huge and it's one I will always remember."

The former World No. 27 fired 11 aces of his own, winning 79 per cent of first serve points and saving four of five break points faced. He joined doubles champions Sam Groth and Chris Guccione as Australian titlists in Bogota this week, improving to 4-0 in hard-court three-setters this year. Tomic, who received $120,270 and 250 Emirates ATP Rankings points for his efforts, will break back into the Top 100 with the title.

Karlovic, meanwhile, suffered his first defeat in the Colombian capital, ending an eight-match win streak. The 35 year old was seeking to become the oldest tour-level titlist this year and 11th over-30 champion. He falls to 5-7 in finals on the ATP World Tour, dropping his fourth straight in 2014.

"It is difficult when you lose like this," said Karlovic. "I had a lot of opportunities in the beginning. All in all it was a great week. I was in the final again and I can only be happy. I really like the conditions here and hopefully I will be back next year."

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