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With the forthright and fearless determination that has helped it lead the U.S. into the rearmost ranks of international tennis, the United States Lawn Tennis Association last week resolutely turned its back on the only vital question confronting the sport today: open tennis. The backward march at the meeting in Los Angeles was a retreat and not a rout—that is, it was conducted with the predictable dignity of a minuet.
At this moment in tennis history the most enlightened authorities, including the president of the International Federation, the head of the British tennis association, the management at Wimbledon and former U.S. Davis Cup Captain Bill Talbert (SI, Feb. 5) agree that some form of open tennis is crucially necessary now. Their view on the eventual solution, and one virtually certain to be effected at Wimbledon within the next two years, is the elimination of all distinction between pros and amateurs at all top tournaments—the elimination, in fact, of the very terms themselves.
It is indicative of the USLTA's sense of direction that its outgoing president, George Barnes, recognized in his farewell speech that "there is a tremendous sentiment for open competition on the part of many players, the press and the general public," and that the incoming president, Edward A. Turville, in his inaugural message stated his disbelief that "further discussion of [the open question] would be of any value at the present time." Both gentlemen are horrified at the very notion of removing the distinction between amateur and pro.
Pacing their steps to their leaders', the rank-and-file delegates at Los Angeles first put forward a tentative motion calling for a vote on the general "principle" of open tennis, then fearing rebuke, hastily withdrew it. In its place the meeting proposed and approved the same resolution it had passed a year before: a resolution urging the International Federation to let each nation make up its own mind, if it had one. "Everyone," said retiring President Barnes, employing open syntax, "felt he didn't want to make up his own mind until he'd seen some definite program."
Laconic report of a junior high school basketball game from an Illinois publication, the La Harpe Quill:
TARZAN VS. FIBER GLASS