WEST PALM BEACH, FLA., NOV. 28 -- Ivan Lendl and Pat Cash, the U.S. Open and Wimbledon champions, respectively, qualified for Sunday's finals of the $1 million Stakes Match by finishing two days of round-robin play today with the most money.
They eliminated Stefan Edberg and John McEnroe in today's last group of matches in this new concept, in which each of the four players was staked to $250,000 at the start. Money changed hands every time the ball was put in play.
In this format, aces and double faults were worth $2,000, each rally hit was worth $200, and each of the abbreviated games, decided by at least two points, was worth $30,000.
Sunday, the stakes will be doubled; $4,000 for aces and double faults and $400 for each rally hit. In this best-of-five series of 21-point games, the first three games will be worth $30,000, $60,000 and $90,000. If additional games are necessary they will be worth $120,000 and $150,000.
Lendl, the world's top-ranked player, emerged with $332,600 for first place after winning two of his three matches today and finishing with a 4-2 record.
Cash, an Australian who is ranked No. 7 in the world, finished 3-3 after following Friday's sweep with an 0-3 performance today. He will take $250,600 into the final against Lendl.
Sweden's Edberg, the Australian Open winner who is ranked No. 2, followed Friday's 0-3 showing with a 3-0 mark today but finished third in the money standings.
McEnroe, several times on the verge of rallying into consideration for the finals, finished last with $182,000 after failing to overcome Lendl in the last match of the program.
"I came in last but I made $182,000. That's hard to complain about," McEnroe said. "I could wind up with more than the loser in the final. That's one of the things that's wrong with this."
McEnroe faced Lendl in the finale today, needing to win more than $32,600 to displace Cash as the second finalist. But Lendl won, 15-13, and earned $36,000 to end McEnroe's chances.
The match was tight, with McEnroe losing a short early lead when Lendl won six of seven points and took a 13-9 edge in points and an $8,800-$3,200 money margin.
The second and last of these points were $2,000 aces.
The last one, which the linesman first called a fault and then corrected, caused a minor McEnroe dispute. But McEnroe's objections were unsuccessful and his rally into a 13-13 tie was stymied by Lendl, who served out the last two points.