Roger Federer found his form back on grass as he defeated ace-king Ivo Karlovic 7-6,7-6 in straight sets to reach his 8th Halle final.
Federer knew those break points would not come as easily if Karlovic found his serving groove again, which most certainly he did. The big Croatian set an ace record in his quarterfinal match against Tomas Berdych, firing home 45 of those rippers to stun his Czech opponent.
The men’s record in any singles is 113 aces, byJohn Isner in his marathon Wimbledon win in 2010 over Nicolas Mahut, who hit 103.
Before the match, Karlovic said
”He’s the best on grass so it will be really difficult, but if I serve like today I will have a chance.”
Most certainly, Federer proved why he is still the best on grass with brilliant down-the-line winners and top notch volleying to make the most of the Karlovic services that he could return.
The match saw some unbelievable ground-strokes by Federer complemented by adept footwork and meticulous serving to ensure that there was no break of serve through the match.
Federer is looking for his 8th title at Halle which would tie him with Rafael Nadal (Monte Carlo and Barcelona) and Guillermo Vilas (Bueno Ares) for the second-most championships at a single tournament. Nadal and his nine French Open titles are the all-time record. However, Federer would hold the non-clay mark with a victory this week.
Federer now faces the winner of the other semi-final between Nishikori and Seppi in the final to achieve this phenomenal feat.