An Ivo Karlovic interview

Q: Today’s match against Monaco must be a big confidence boost the way you’ve been struggling lately. Are you hoping this is going to turn the season around for you?

A:Yes, I mean in the last few months you know it wasn’t easy because I was losing a lot. I was also losing my confidence. So this win it will help me to know that it is not that bad, that life is not that bad you know? Hopefully I will continue winning and with every win your confidence grows. Winning it is the only thing that can boost your confidence.

Ivo Karlovic

Q: What things have you been working on specifically in your game to get back to the level you know you can play at?

A: Well you know I was working on almost everything. You cannot work only on one thing. You must work on everything because tennis is really a complex game and everything has to be good. So I was working on my strengths as well as my weaknesses which are moving and my return game. But you know, as I said with winning everything improves better.

Q: Other than your serve which you are known for obviously what part of your game are you most proud of?

A: I think you know it’s my volleys. I think in today’s game there is not a lot of volleyers so I think I am doing a pretty good job. Also everybody thinks that I don’t move as well but for my height and my weight I think I am pretty good at it.

Q: Whose serve on tour gives you the most problems?

A: The most difficult to return was Roddick definitely.

Q: Even in today’s game?

A: Well I mean I didn’t play against him since 2009. So I don’t really know now how it is but like always if I played him it was difficult to return.

Q: Have you seen Canadian Milos Raonic and his serve?

A: Yes I did and it’s unbelievable also, yes. We never actually played a match, so it was only one exhibition I think. But I don’t know in the match how difficult it is to read and return his serve.

Q: You must get asked to be a hitting partner often with players who want to work on their return games? Do you have a lot of requests and how do you decide who to hit with in practice?

A: No, it is not you no. It is a little bit weird that they don’t want to practice a lot their return game. Which is for me also good, because if I play against them they are not used to it.

Q: In terms of nicknames, I’ve heard “Dr. Ivo” from the Austin Power movies. Do you have any other nicknames that you’ve acquired over the years?

A: Karlo and Karluchi.

Q: What are some of the good things about being 6’10’’ and what are maybe some negative aspects to being so tall?

A: Well it is good because I can overlook everything. When I walk down the street I can see a mile away even though my eyes are not as good as when I was young but I can still see a lot more than everybody else. I don’t know, it’s just, you know, I’m used to it so for me everything is good. The only thing which I don’t like is I cannot buy a car which I like. I like sports cars but I cannot drive them. I tried once to fit in a Lamborghini and it didn’t go that well.

Q: I guess a Mini is out of the question as well?

A: A mini I don’t know, I never even tried!

Q: What would you have become to do you think if you hadn’t become a professional tennis player?

A: When I was thirteen I was playing a little bit of basketball and the coaches were like really interested in me. After like two months of practicing they were asking me to come to the national team. I didn’t go. Then they were like almost every day they would call my house to see if I’d to go because I was already pretty tall, almost like now. Every day they were like calling me, calling me until I was eighteen. So like for five years every day they would call me. But I was like, I liked tennis you know? But if I would have gone the other way who knows how it would have gone, my career.

Q: Do you get recognized often as a tennis player or do people sometimes think you are a basketball player of some sort?

A: Yeah, I mean always, all the time they ask me what’s my height and then they ask if I am a basketball player. Only once somebody asked me if I was a rower, which I don’t know how they got that idea from my height.

Q: You’re pretty active with Twitter which the fans like to follow. One of your recent tweets was, “I looked at my hands and they appeared to be of an old man.” Do you sometimes at the age of 32 feel like one of the older men on tour?

A: Yeah, I mean of course. I remember when I turned thirty years old it was the most depressing day of my life, so I know how Roger must feel now. But you know, on the other hand I’m also grateful that I played this long because a lot people don’t.

Q: How much longer to you see your career lasting and what are your hopes?

A: Well I don’t know it depends on injuries, motivation and everything. For now I think I could still play for a few more years.

Q: Thanks very much for the time and good luck with the rest of the tournament and with the U.S. Open coming up.

A: No problem, thank you very much.