BERLIN (Reuters) - Croatian Ivo Karlovic hit a record 45 aces en route to beating third seed Tomas Berdych and reach the Halle Open semi-finals on Friday.
The big-serving Croatian, standing at 2.11 meters tall, improved the record for a three-set ATP tour match by one ace, winning 7-5 6-7(8) 6-3.
"Berdych returns quite well really," Karlovic, the world number 27, told reporters. "That's why lots of aces are so important."
Predictably, the 36-year-old Karlovic clinched victory with an ace.
"I didn't really know how many aces I'd done. But when I heard it was 45 I knew that's a new record. Hitting aces helps a lot, you can avoid the volleys. I was surprised when I was told on court after the match how many aces I hit.
"Hopefully I can continue like that in the semi-final."
Asked whether a spot in the last four or the record was more important he said: "That's difficult to say. The semi-final is always good, but only lasts a week. The record may hold for a long, long time."
Top seed Roger Federer takes on German Florian Mayer for a spot in the last four later on Friday.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Pritha Sarkar)