U.S. Open Notebook
NEW YORK (AP) _ Heat survival became a hot topic at the Open on Friday when temperatures soared into the 90′s and on-court temperatures reached 120 degrees.
By around 4:00 p.m., the Open’s first-aid office had handled about 17 spectators with heat related problems. They treated fans by cooling them down with cold towels and liquids. They advised staying away from sodas, saying Gatorade-type drinks and water are best for this weather.
″They don’t get out of the sun,″ said Mike Giampietro, with the Corona Volunteer Abulance Service. ″You get matches that are three hours long and they sit there. The trouble comes when people finally get up - that’s when people pass out.″
Dr. Irving Glick, the tournament physician, said there were no heat-related problems with any players Friday afternoon. He said there are more precautions taken for the players in intense heat.
″We have umbrellas on-court during the changeover to shield them from the sun,″ said Glick. ″We have ice buckets with wet towels for their necks. We make sure they drink before they go out and have a cup or two of water during the changeovers.″
″We have them all weigh themselves before and after their matches so we know how much water they have to replace. They are all pretty educated these days about proper diets. And they take mineral supplements before and after their matches.″
ODDS ’N ENDS: Michael Chang was the youngest, shortest, lightest player remaining in the men’s draw going into the third round.
Chang is 19 years, 6 months old; 5 ft, 8 inches tall and weighs 145 pounds.
American Todd Martin is the tallest and heaviest player left in the draw. Martin is 6 ft, 6 inches tall and weighs in at 190 pounds.
Jimmy Connors is the oldest player still around. He turns 39 on Monday.
The highest ranked player is No. 1 Boris Becker, and qualifier Stephane Simian rates as the lowest ranked left with a current career high ranking of 257.
Simian, a native of France, was a qualifier here. He turned pro in January after earning a degree in business administration from the University of South Carolina. The first regular tour event he ever played was last week in Schenectady, New York - he lost in the first round to Francisco Clavet.
TAKING IT TO THE LIMIT: Gigi Fernandez’s 7-6 (7-1), 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-2) victory over Leila Meshki went the limit that a women’s match can go under the tiebreak rule.
Only one other women’s match has gone the full 39 games at the Open since the tiebreak system was instituted in 1970. That match was a quarterfinal pairing in 1985 between Steffi Graf and Pam Shriver. Graf won 7-6 (7-4), 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-4).
Derrick Rostagno’s 6-7 (2-7), 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-4) win over Jakob Hlasek Friday marks the fifth time since 1970 that as many as four tiebreakers have been played in a men’s singles match.
SIDESHOWS: There is more going on at the U.S. Open than tennis.
The USA Network, which is broadcasting the Open, filmed a segment of the action adventure series ″Counterstrike″ at the National Tennis Center.
Christopher Plummer and actor-producer Simon MacCorkindale are starring the the show, and the episode being filmed at the Open is entitled ″In the Blood.″
Plummer’s character, Alexander Addington’s 16-year-old niece from Yugoslavia, is being touted as the next Martina Navratilova. She discovers she becomes a victim of an international plot while training for the Open.
The scene was filmed in the United States Tennis Association’s Presidents Box. USA’s tennis commentator, Linda Pentz, conducted the interview of Plummer for the ″In the Blood″ segment.