"Bobby will win," said Kramer. "The only hope Billie Jean has is to get off to a good start and exploit Bobby's lack of physical speed. It might take Bobby some time to figure out some way to get by her.
"If that happens then he has to be able to go the distance. He might have to play four or five sets. But I feel he will have too much control and will exploit her weaknesses!"
But what weakness could the five-time Wimbledon champion have?
"Riggs is going to be able to exploit a very poor stroke or shot of Billie Jean's, her forehand. Everything off her forehand, except her volley, is quite weak. Riggs with his good control will serve 90% of his first or second shots into that forehand, something that none of the girls apparently can do.
"The only doubt in my mind is that Riggs' soft stuff may be so soft that it enables Billie Jean to come up to the net and gain good court position to really volley well. I don't think Bobby can move too well anymore. He doesn't figure to be too zippy out there."
"I believe I'm versatile enough to handle his garbage shots," said King. "I've got good mobility and I know I've got to work a lot on my overhead. One thing, I never try to underestimate an opponent. Riggs is better than he looks.
"I don't plan to change a thing between now and then. I think one of the mistakes is changing gears."
When the women pros made a recent stop in Nashville, the Tennessean took a poll and 70.6% of the fans (78.1% of the women, 64.2% of the men) tabbed King as the winner. Billie Jean herself playfully filled out a ballot:
"I predicted Margaret would win, and I predicted Ilie Nastase one year at Wimbledon and Chris Evert another year, and I wasn't right either time. So I'm not much at predicting."
Then she marked an X beside her own name.