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That was the British response to the news that the U.S.—thanks to a passing injury—might be without the services of Dave Sime in the 200-meter at Melbourne (see page 8). The British pick their Olympic athletes through a selection board system. The board is not bound by an athlete's performance on any given day: the board is simply asked, in the light of all the evidence, to pick those likely to turn in the finest performances in Melbourne next November.
" U.S. trials are sudden death," said Arthur Hodson, national secretary of the Australian Amateur Athletic Union, when the Sime news reached him. "Here a topnotch man may be eliminated in trials and still be selected if his form improves, or if he had an off day."
Rough translation of a Russian sports ministry spokesman on the subject of Sime's disqualification: "It can't happen here."
In a rush of good sense, the U.S. Olympic Track & Field Committee has now decided it doesn't matter that Dave Sime could not compete in the AAU preliminary trials. He will get a starting position in this week's final Olympic Trials at Los Angeles after all. His leg just better be ready, though.
OXYGEN AND THE BRAVES
By the hot, Muggy afternoon of June 17, when the Milwaukee Braves showed up for their Sunday double-header in Brooklyn, they presented all the classic signs of a team deep in the baseball staggers. They had lost 12 of the last 17 games, had slumped from first place to fifth and—most classic of all symptoms—had just dropped Manager Charlie Grimm. A week later, in the most astonishing turnabout of 1956, they had won 10 straight and were back in first place. Manager Fred Haney denies special credit. He is convincing when he says the Braves are now "riding the crest of the law of averages. The team was due, and we've been getting the breaks."
The oxygen is the idea of the team's trainer, Dr. Charles Lacks, who has convinced a goodly number of players that it counteracts hot-weather fatigue. He has a lightweight portable setup that includes two tanks, mask and tube and fits into a leather traveling case. Lacks has been carrying the gear with him all season but used it for the first time on the day of the double-header with Brooklyn.