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Karlovic proves the ace in the pack with punters

Ivo Karlovic of Croatia serves the ball to Horacio Zeballos of Argentina during their  first-round match at the Australian Open
Ivo Karlovic of Croatia serves the ball to Horacio Zeballos of Argentina during their first-round match at the Australian Open MARK R. CRISTINO

TENNIS: Croatia's Ivo Karlovic was not surprisingly the punters favourite when it came to bookmaker William Hill's Chase the Ace.

The promotion allows punters to win up to $10 in bonus bets for every ace the player they have backed in the head-to-head market serves at this year's Australian Open.

The total paid out after only two days of play is already a staggering $2.63 million in bonus bets, and with another 12 days of play remaining at Melbourne Park the promotion is forecast to cost in excess of $10,000,000.

During a marathon first-round march against Horacio Zeballos, big serving Croatian Karlovic thundered down 75 aces - the third-highest number ever recorded in a grand slam match.

With over 8000 clients backing him, William Hill was paying out $7835 for every ace he served. The result was over $570,000 being paid out on this one match alone.

John Isner will be ready to serve up some aces today.
John Isner will be ready to serve up some aces today. Andrew Brownbill

And the action won't stop there. Current world No.19 John Isner will be on court today in his round two match against Mischa Zverev.

The American was the most popular player on the opening day for Chase the Ace and currently averages over 30 aces a match in the Australian Open.

He is the world-record holder for most aces in a grand slam match with a staggering 113.

Ahead of the clash, 9555 William Hill customers had backed Isner.

Despite reports the impact of William Hill's sponsorship of the Australian Open would be reduced given the removal of on-court signage, the company says Chase the Ace has solidified the strength of the partnership and delivered the business phenomenal year on year growth figures across the board.

Topics:  australian open (tennis) betting ivo karlovic john isner