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'TIS THE SEASON TO BE WARY
IFS, BUTS AND MAYBES
No sooner had the Mexicans knocked the U.S. out of 1976 Davis Cup competition—when Raul Ramirez, playing before a home crowd in Mexico City, won two singles matches and teamed with Marcelo Lara to take the doubles—than the second-guessing began. After all, it was the second straight time that Mexico had eliminated the U.S., and Colombia had done it a year earlier. This time it was especially embarrassing because we had a new Davis Cup captain, Tony Trabert, who had persuaded Jimmy Connors to join the team.
But Mexico won anyway, and the second-guessing went this way. We would have won...
?If Connors had played doubles as well as singles. (But Dick Stockton and Erik van Dillen, who did play doubles, have been a team since they were 12 years old, and they looked very sharp in practice.)
The plain fact is that the Mexicans, and particularly Ramirez, were inspired. On this occasion, at least, they had the better team.
FORCE VS. FINESSE