MONEY TALKS TENNIS
The U.S. Open at Forest Hills scheduled for Sept. 1 is rapidly losing its chief attractions. Wimbledon champion Evonne Goolagong announced some time ago that she was tired and was going home to Australia for a rest. Among the top male stars who will not compete are Roy Emerson, Cliff Drysdale, Andres Gimeno and Fred Stolle. Now Ken Rosewall, the defending champion, has added himself to the defectors.
And Rod Laver may join them. Beaten at Toronto by Roger Taylor, Laver quit the doubles and went home to Corona del Mar, Calif. Depressed and confused by his slump, Laver said he felt "like a bull physically but drained mentally."
"I haven't made up my mind yet [about playing at Forest Hills]," he said, "but at this stage I'm doubtful."
What is happening to Forest Hills is what happened to the French championships in May. The quick buck is of more concern now than tradition.
The most a player can make at Forest Hills is $20,000, and to get that he must play for two weeks and in seven five-set matches. By contrast, Lamar Hunt's World Championship Tennis playoffs in November offer a $50,000 prize for winning only three matches spread out over a leisurely two weeks. All the men players who have quit so far are on the WCT team.
The tie game in any sport is a disappointment to fans of both sides except, of course, when an utter underdog manages to achieve a tie. Now Kansas is experimenting with a scheme to end all ties in high school football. The plan has a certain logic going for it and, conceivably, could spread to college and professional football. The National Alliance Football Rules Committee is permitting all Kansas high school football teams to try it out.
If a game is tied at the end of regulation play, there will be a coin toss. The winner will get the ball on the opponent's 10-yard line and have four plays in which to score by touchdown or field goal, and with the option of a one- or two-point conversion after a touchdown.
Then the ball goes to the other team for four plays. If one team scores in the series and the other does not, the team that scores wins. If neither scores or they both score the same number of points, they continue into second, third, fourth and subsequent overtimes until one team outscores the other from the 10, with each team having had an equal number of opportunities to score.