NOTTINGHAM, England, June 20 (UPI) -- Defending champion Ivo Karlovic survived two tiebreakers Friday and advanced to the championship match of The Slazenger Open tennis tournament in England.
Karlovic, seeded fourth, has won his last nine matches in the tournament but was pushed hard by eighth-seeded Gael Monfils. Karlovic's powerful serve was working as he had 11 aces and was broken just once in taking the 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-4) victory.
He will face third-seeded Fernando Verdasco, who had no trouble in getting past Marin Cilic 6-3, 6-1 in his semifinal.
Karlovic, 3-2 in finals, is seeking his first title of 2008 while Verdasco is 1-3 in ATP finals. It is his first final of the year and first on a grass court. Verdasco and Karlovic have split their two previous meetings.