PHOENIX, AZ - If you’re old enough, you’ll remember Bobby Riggs. He’s the guy who challenged female tennis star, Billie Jean King to a “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match back in 1973.
Riggs, 55, had already beaten 30-year-old Margaret Court, then the top female player in the world. Riggs claimed that even at 55, he could still beat the best the female player in the world.
After beating Court in two sets, he challenged Billie Jean King to a winner-take-all best of three tennis match in a nationally televised event at the Houston Astrodome.
It was forty years ago, and the outspoken “male chauvinist” knew he could beat the “lesser” female. The winner would receive $100,000 and bragging rights to the winner’s entire gender.
Billie Jean King won in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3, 6-3, and Riggs was openly embarrassed, although he did jump the net to congratulate King.
At the time, there were a number of people who felt like Riggs “threw” the match. According to experts, Riggs seemed to give up on shots or send easy returns into the net. He even double faulted a number of times on his serve, which was considered the strength of his game.
Four decades later, we discover that Bobby Riggs actually did “throw” the match because he owed the mob more than $100,000 in gambling debt.
Monday night, we’re hearing that Riggs needed the cash to pay off the mafia. The entire match was indeed a sham!
We also know that after the match, Riggs went to work for the Tropicana in Las Vegas for, whom else, some of his mafia friends.
So what’s my reaction? Rats, that changes everything! Maybe men still rule the sports world after all? Or not!
That’s Fouhy on Sports!
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Click on the region names in the map below to see news from that region.
Things To Do
INSIDE: View our list of events happening this week around the Valley.
RIGHT NOW: Top Stories
The improving prospects for Yuma's lemon producers come as weather conditions in two of the world's major citrus producing countries led to a global squeeze on the supply of lemons.
The shooting happened around 2 a.m. at an apartment complex near the Loop 101 and University Drive, said Sgt. Michael Pooley of the Tempe Police Department.
Cold weather has forced thousands of flights to be canceled across the country, leaving many travelers frustrated for yet another day.
The Cardinals enter Sunday's game against St. Louis on an eight-game losing streak against teams in their division.
Score a chance at a family trip to Disneyland just by watching the APS Light Parade TODAY on ABC15!
As the rain and snow taper off today we're in store for more cool days and some frigid nights to kick off the week.