The combination of Miami Dolphin Coach Don Shula and Chris Evert might appear to be unbeatable in a charity tennis match, but on the court Shula is described as having "all the moves of a dump truck." And against Dolphin Defensive Back Tim Foley and Ching Ling Chang, a member of the Virginia Slims circuit, Shula and Miss Evert were defeated decisively, 3-1. "Go ahead, you explain how we beat them," Foley said, nodding to Ching Ling. Miss Chang was able to answer very briefly. "We tried to keep the ball away from Chris," she said.
Richard Sandilands, a 30-year-old Edmonton dentist, revealed something about the relationship between a man and his dog recently. Shortly after his black Lab named Sam won an award as Canada's champion Labrador retriever, Sandilands informed a reporter that he had turned down an offer of $12,000 for Sam. "I could sell my wife for that, but not my dog," he said. Wife Marjorie was piqued, to say the least, when she caught hubby's valuation of her in the Edmonton Journal. Sandilands admitted he made the remark, but added weakly, "The reporter put the wrong emphasis on it." He's got to have a better mouth than that to retrieve his bird.
Fearless Manzini, a Philadelphia escape artist (that's a joke right there, Sonny), should have suspected it wasn't going to be his day when his white tights seemed too loose and his crash helmet got jammed over his ears. Even so, he was going to go through with this little trick—being suspended handcuffed and strait-jacketed and upside down from a 90-foot crane above Philly's JFK Plaza. The rope would be set afire, giving Manzini from seven to 10 minutes to astound one and all by surviving the predicament. At the end of seven awkward minutes, it became apparent from Manzini's anguished cries that he was neither Houdini nor fearless. He pleaded to be lowered before the rope parted. Boos from the spectators. After Manzini went up again and escaped within two minutes—but without the handcuffs and burning rope—his agent tried to convince the crowd that Manzini had lived up to his billing. Then, taking Fearless aside, he told him, "Boy, you're really a jerk. You shouldn't have let them put handcuffs on you in the first place."
Boris Spassky, playing the white knight, rode into New York and in a simultaneous battle with 41 local pawnslingers at Chess City won 32, drew eight and lost one. The youngest challenger, 6-year-old Robert Le-Donne of Woodcliff Lake, N.J., said he had been playing for a year and a half and expected to win "if Spassky makes the first mistake." The mistake was Robert's, which he may have anticipated. Before play he presented the Russian with a pair of Las Vegas chess dice, explaining gamely, "For your son."
A bill urging Interior Secretary Rogers Morton to place the Australian kangaroo on the list of endangered species has been tossed into the hopper of the Maryland State Legislature by Delegates S. Frank Shore and Joseph Sachs in hopes, they said, that the kangaroo would be valued for more than "athletic shoes and pet food." Alas, the English language seemed more endangered than the species. One legislator said that a solid majority was "in the pouch," but a dissenter said, "I have just been told the Governor is going to exercise his pocket veto on this." It's enough to make a man roo politics.
Dick Smith, U.S. diving coach in the 1968 Olympics and a former coach at Arizona State and the Air Force Academy, was one of but five survivors of the Pago Pago plane crash that killed 96 persons. He dived out of the plane and suffered only a black eye and minor bruises. Smith, who was known for demonstrating and teaching technique by diving into sand pits, happily credits that training with saving his life.
Dan Aleksiewiez, a halfback, has been signed to a contract by the San Diego Chargers. His assets include a nine-yards-per-carry average for a minor league football team called the Albany ( N.Y.) Mallers, and his status three years ago as the nation's leading college-division runner. And that name. It isn't as difficult as it seems. Just refer to him as Don A-to-Z. A lot of people do.
Larry James, former Villanova and Olympic star and now a member of the pro track tour, got caught with his pants down—or up, if you look at it another way—in a Jesse Owens-style race against a horse and a 1931 Model A Ford roadster. James started from the quarter pole at Bowie Race Course. The horse, What A Treasure, broke from the half mile and the auto started from the ?ths marker. Unfortunately for James, he was still taking his warmup pants off when starter Eddie Blind sent the contestants off winging. "I saw them running and I tried to strip down to my uniform," James said. "Then I thought, 'Better get into this race,' so I pulled up the warmups again and took off." The car won by four lengths, and James finished about 40 feet behind the horse.