Men's Semis and Finals
Chip Baird, winner, with his brother, Steve, of the 1976 Men’s Nationals, along with numerous other tournaments
See: Paddle World, Vol. 1, No. 3, Spring 1976 for a full report on Me's, Women's, and Mixwd Nationals
Steve Baird (left) and Chip Baird, Men's National Champions, being presented with reproductions of the Robert Sticker oil painting by Charles Millard, President of Coca-Cola Bottling NY. Millard had commissioned Sticker to create this iconic picture of four players at Fox Meadow Tennis Club.
In 1976, for the first time, stringent qualifying criteria were applied to entrants to limit the Men’s draw to a manageable number. The event could be followed on television as PBS, courtesy of Tribuno, filmed it. Commentary was by Billy Talbert and Dick Squires
The gang’s all here to watch as Chip and Steve Baird, receiving, win the 1976 Nationals. Note the cameraman with his overview from the cat bird’s seat!
By 11:30 on Sunday the ticket allocation of 2000 had been sold. Most spectators found seats in the stands on three sides of the Court 1 and others climbed tress or hung from the roof and pipes of the clubhouse.
In the Men’s, the Baird brothers defeated defending champions Jennings and Steele in four sets that included a dramatic ending when Steve passed out for a moment. This was the first of ten Men’s titles for Steve Baird.
Paddle Talk carried the full Men’s And Women’s draws.
In the Senior events, Chuck Baird and Roger Lankenau lost their bid for a hat-trick in the 45+, losing to Don Miller and Dick Squires, but did capture the 50+ championship, making it five in a row for Chuck.