© ATP 250 Ecuador Open

At the 2017 Ecuador Open, Ivo Karlovic fell to eventual champion Victor Estrella Burgos in a third-set tiebreak in the round of 16.

Ivo Karlovic, 38, Faces The Truth In Quito: He's Old... But Still Very Good

Seventh seed looking to start the clay-court season well in Quito

Ivo Karlovic admits it: For a tennis player, he's old. But, as Karlovic continues to show during the 2018 ATP World Tour season, the Croatian is also still very good.

Just last month, the 38-year-old achieved yet another marker for the history books. The 6'11” Karlovic struck 53 aces to beat Japan's Yuichi Sugita 7-6(3), 6-7(3), 7-5, 4-6, 12-10 in four hours and 33 minutes. With the win, Karlovic became the oldest player to compete in the Australian Open third round since Australian Ken Rosewall, aged 44, in 1978, when the draw was 64 players. Karlovic also became the oldest player in the Australian Open third round since the advent of a 128-player draw in 1982.

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Then again, these types of accomplishments have become something of an annual tradition – if not more often – for Karlovic. In 2017, he was the oldest player to reach the third-round at a Grand Slam since 38-year-old Jimmy Connors at the 1991 US Open. In 2016, Karlovic finished the year at No. 20 – a career best – and was the oldest player in the Top 20 since 43-year-old Rosewall in July 1978.

It means a lot, because it means that even at my old age I can still do good results. That means a lot,” Karlovic told ATPWorldTour.com. “I am old, I know. But I don't feel like I'm getting old.”

He harbours no intentions of stopping soon, either. Karlovic, who turns 39 on 28 February, wants to stay healthy throughout 2018. Last year, bumps and niggles to his knee, back and left ankle forced him to miss four events.

But if Karlovic, who has won eight ATP World Tour titles, can stay healthy this year, look forward to plenty more “oldest-ever” records for him again this season. “If I could be healthy all year that would really help a lot,” Karlovic said. “As long as my ranking is up where I can be in all the events, I won't consider quitting.”

Did You Know?
Karlovic holds the record for most aces served in his career. He has served 12,428, 2,000 aces more than Roger Federer, who is in second place on the all-time list. Learn more in Infosys Scores & Stats.

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