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37 MEN TO BEAT THE RUSSIANS
Tex Maule
June 29, 1959
The confident faces below reflect the strength of U.S. track hopes against the U.S.S.R.
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June 29, 1959

37 Men To Beat The Russians

The confident faces below reflect the strength of U.S. track hopes against the U.S.S.R.

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The steeplechase, a diabolical event which includes a water jump, was won handily by Phil Coleman, the American record holder, but the excitement in it was provided by the unfortunate Ike Matza. Attempting the first water jump, he tripped over the hurdle, somersaulted through the air to land on his back in the water. He lost his glasses in the foot-deep, murky water and spent a frantic minute scrabbling for them while the field wheeled around the track and approached the jump a second time. He retrieved the glasses just in time to avoid being trampled. The decathlon competitors (the injured Rafer Johnson has been invited to join the Philadelphia squad without the need to qualify) will be added to the 37 men already qualified.

All in all, by the time the meet was over, the American athletes had proved again that they are the best in the world. Of the 35 men chosen for the Russian meet, 15 were recruited from the surprisingly strong West Coast entries. The others hailed from the rest of the country. They will be back together again in July, when they meet the Russians. Last year the U.S. men won the first meet; they should, more easily, win the second.

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