Convincing Karlovic Captures Los Cabos Crown
37 year old notches second title of season
At 37, Ivo Karlovic continues to take the ATP World Tour by storm. The big-serving Croatian claimed his eighth career title, downing top seed Feliciano Lopez 7-6(5), 6-2 on Saturday at the Abierto Mexicano Mifel in Los Cabos.
"It was a difficult match in the beginning," said Karlovic. "He was playing really well. I was a little lucky at the end of the first set, but that gave me confidence for the rest of the match. I realised what he was doing and took my opportunities.
"Everyone here is really nice to me. The venue is unbelievable. I hope to come back next year."
Third-seeded Karlovic took the matchup of elder statesmen after one hour and 22 minutes, firing 21 aces while saving his lone break point faced. He claimed his second ATP World Tour title in less than two months (Newport), while 34-year-old Lopez was denied in going back-to-back after emerging victorious on the clay of Gstaad. With a combined age of more than 72 years, it was the oldest final on the ATP World Tour since Hong Kong 1977, between Ken Rosewall and Tom Gorman (74 years, 8 months). In fact, Karlovic has been featured in the three oldest finals since then…
Oldest Tour-Level Finals Since 1977
Karlovic d. Lopez
|2016||72 years, 3 months|
Karlovic d. Muller
||70 years, 6 months
|Hewitt d. Karlovic
||68 years, 10 months
After capturing the opener in a tie-break, the Croatian pulled away with his first break in the sixth game of the second set. A Lopez double fault and perfectly executed drop volley from Karlovic gave him the lead for good at 4-2. Two games later, he lifted his arms in triumph after another double fault from the Spaniard sealed the victory on Karlovic's first match point.
"I thought I could have won, but I committed a few unforced errors in the tie-break and two big double faults in the second set and was broken twice," Lopez said following the match. "It was
complicated because he does not give you many chances on his serve.
"It's difficult to take positives today, but I believe that these recent weeks have been great for me. It's another final and I have great memories from Cincinnati and New York, so I hope to play well."
Karlovic, who became the first 37 year old to lift an ATP World Tour singles trophy in 27 years with his title on the grass of Newport last month, is the inaugural winner in Los Cabos. It marks
the second time Karlovic has won multiple titles in a season, having previously done so in 2007. He extended his FedEx ATP Head2Head lead over Lopez to 6-3, reeling off four straight wins
since last conceding defeat 11 years ago in Indian Wells.
The 6'11" right-hander takes home 250 Emirates ATP Rankings points and is projected to rise three spots to World No. 21 on Monday. He earns $128,200 in prize money, while Lopez emerges with $67,515 and 150 Emirates ATP Rankings points. The Spaniard, who saw his eight-match winning streak snapped, was bidding for a sixth ATP World Tour title in his 15th final.