In regard to Gary Player's statement that "making rude remarks about a golf course is like accepting an invitation to dinner and telling the host the food is lousy" (Tony's a Shark at Pasture Pool, June 29), Mr. Player is an excellent golfer and I think a fine man, but he has no right to talk that way about a fellow golfer who is one of the best on the tour today. Dave Hill didn't get an invitation to play in the U.S. Open. He had to qualify for it through hard work and long hours of practice. He didn't tell the host the food was lousy. He merely made some remarks about the course that were probably true. When golfers like Nicklaus and Palmer have trouble breaking 80 you know it isn't because they're not keeping their head down. Dan Jenkins is absolutely right in calling the fine imposed on Mr. Hill "absurd." The PGA had no right to do it.
Newport News, Va.
If Dave Hill can be fined for his comments about the Hazeltine golf course (June 29) surely Orville Moody should be reprimanded for his appalling remarks about student demonstrators (June 22). Baseball Commissioner Kuhn says Jim Bouton's book reflects badly on professional baseball's image; certainly Moody's statement is much more damaging to golf's image than Bouton's book ever can be to baseball. Unfortunately there are far too many Americans today who agree with Moody's horrendous remarks.
JAY L. FRANZ
The questionable statement of Mr. Moody was probably a figure of speech just as "kill the umpire" is. Give the man a break. Don't condemn him for a slip of the tongue he probably never meant in the first place.
RANDALL W. FRICK
Isle of Palms, S.C.
I read The Sad Tale of the Tiger in the July 6 issue. Let me tell you the sad tale of the tiger hunter.
If you think, the stock market was a bad bet in '69, you should try a tiger hunt in India, normally known as a shikar, which translated means sucker. If nonactivity is your bag, try India. They illegally bounce you all night in a World War II jeep, with the spotlights piercing the flora looking for animal eyes. You hire an army to drive the "game" to you. You sit in a tree over live bait or over dead bait. Results are the same: nothing.
After a month the dawn comes. Hell, there isn't enough game for a healthy tiger to live on. After getting an official drunk the following facts came out. There were between 450 and 500 foreign tiger hunters in India during the season of '69. Forty-seven tigers were killed, which means one in 10 hunters was getting a tiger at $5,000 a throw. You could do better in Las Vegas.
Glad to be home.
JAMES J. MELLON JR.
Re the SCORECARD item "Crazy" in the July 6 issue and the comments of beleaguered Wisconsin Athletic Director Elroy Hirsch ("Crew is a wonderful tradition at Wisconsin, but we can no longer afford $40,000 worth of tradition"). I wonder what he can afford? Are sports for the benefit of the participants or merely moneymakers for the school that sponsors them?
Crew at Wisconsin may not be a money-making proposition—and thus may not impress Hirsch—but how about the fact that while Wisconsin football was improving to a magnificent 3-7 record and a tie for fifth place in the Big Ten in 1969, Wisconsin's crew was second only to Washington in the national championships. And doesn't sports also have something to do with winning?
Syracuse University Crew
Silver Spring, Md.
Accompanying Claud Cockburn's delightful article (Triumph for the Clan O'Brien, July 6)—full of local color, Irish atmosphere and charm—there is a photograph of significance showing the horses nearing the finish of the Irish Sweeps Derby. It shows the ears of the place horse, Meadowville, turned back, which usually is a sign the horse is running under pressure. On the other hand, Nijinsky, drawing away to win, is shown with ears cocked forward, usually a sign the horse is running well within capacity, serving to underscore the remarks of his jockey, Liam Ward: "My grandmother could have won the race on that horse." What's next, Nijinsky?
New York City