Unless you were one of the 211 people at Rock Creek Tennis Stadium when it ended Friday night -- that's 187 spectators, six line judges, one umpire, one trainer, six ballboys, four scoreboard keepers, two public address announcers and four players -- you probably aren't aware top-seeded Paul Annacone and Christo van Rensburg won a doubles quarterfinal over No. 7 Kelly Jones and Tom Pawsat, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-4.

At 11:55, the second-set tie breaker started. At 12:03 a.m., the third set started. At 12:08, one woman fell asleep and was not even awakened by Pawsat shouting, "Oh, my gosh! Sugar!" after losing his serve in the first game. At 12:37, Annacone and van Rensburg had their first match point. It was not to be. At 12:40, the 10th game of the third set, and 33rd of the match, began. At 12:44, Annacone hit a strong serve. Jones blocked in a weak return that van Rensburg put away.

It was over, after 2 hours 27 minutes. The remaining spectators cheered, the players shook hands, and one voice called out: "Let's hear it for the fans!"

Jimmy Arias isn't from this area, but said he feels like "a hometown favorite. The crowd here has always been great to me. . . . This is the first tournament I've been to for eight times. The first Super Series {top-level tournament} final I made was in Washington."

But his runner-up finish here in 1982 and another in 1983, as well as last year's semifinal finish, were on clay, Arias' surface of choice.

"I would obviously rather play on clay," he said. But the change to a hard court didn't keep him away. "I like Washington. . . . I'm going to come back to Washington if it's played on water."

The style of play at Rock Creek has not changed as dramatically as the change of surfaces might suggest. Serve and volley still is not the only way to go.

Base line always has been Jimmy Connors' style and Ivan Lendl has had to work to feel comfortable at the net, but even Boris Becker has hung back and engaged more in rallies than might be expected from someone nicknamed Boom-Boom.

"The trend in tennis has been for less serve and volley," said Marty Davis, who reached the quarterfinals before being eliminated by Brad Gilbert. " . . . They wanted more rallies and that's what they're getting."