I guess Ivo’s fallen out of favor with the ITF after his loss to Kratochvil. He’s had to enter the qualies of another future, and once again it’s on Cement.
Up first is Dusan Lojda (CZE), another defender with groundies in the 30s and not much else (sure are a lot of these). Ivo should get through this one pretty easily.
Ivo Karlovic (CRO) def. Dusan Lojda (CZE) 6-2 6-1
Lojda just couldn’t get the ball past the big man most of the time. He didn’t have enough of anything to trouble Ivo, especially on Ivo’s serve.
Rok Jarc (SLO) is Ivo’s next opponent. Other than the lovely name, Jarc doesn’t have much to brag about. His stats are very similar to Lojda’s, and he’s a defender too. Another easy match for Ivo.
Ivo Karlovic (CRO) def. Rok Jarc (SLO) 6-1 6-1
There were actually quite a few close games in this match, but Ivo was able to win most of the big points with big serving and solid net play.
In the qualifying match, we’ve got Brent Haygarth (RSA). He’s a volleyer with net skills in the 70s and bright orange sunglasses. Sure, he’s good, but he’s a volleyer. Ivo can take him.
Ivo Karlovic (CRO) def. Brent Haygarth (RSA) 6-4 7-5
This was a match the real Ivo would be proud of. Ivo held his serve with ease the entire match, facing only two break points and saving both of them. Meanwhile, he had numerous chances to break Haygarth but took advantage only one time each set. That was all he needed.
In the first round, Ivo’s up against another volleyer, but Sergio Rojas (PER) is much worse than Haygarth. His volleys are in the 30s, and the rest of his skills are also worse than Haygarth’s. Looks like another easy match for the big man.
Ivo Karlovic (CRO) def. Sergio Rojas (PER) 6-0 7-6(1)
This was a strange match. Ivo had absolutely no trouble in the first set on any part of his game. But all of the sudden, in the 2nd set Rojas stepped it up and was able to hold his serve all but once. He even had set points after coming back from 4-2 down to go 5-4 up. Then in the tiebreak, it was all Ivo.
Now we’re playing the highest ranked guy I’ve seen playing a futures: John Hui (HKG), who’s in the top 300. Not that he deserves it, he’s an average power baseliner with groundies in the 50s and serve in the 40s. On paper Ivo should have the edge, but maybe there’s some hidden reason for Hui’s ranking.
John Hui (HKG) def. Ivo Karlovic (CRO) 6-3 1-6 6-2
Hui was simply unbreakable in the 1st and 3rd sets. Ivo couldn’t get anything going on his serve and Hui was able to find some moments on Ivo’s when Ivo made a few errors and capitalize on them.