Abstract:

The following problem about a tennis match is well—known. See Halmos [1, 2]. Consider 2n tennis players playing a single elimination match. Ask the question: what are the number of games played? The answer can be obtained in two ways. First using the geometric progression 2n1 + 2n2 + • • • 2+1 we find that the answer is 2n — 1. We can also explain the answer as follows: for each game played there is a loser. Thus the total number of games played is equal to the number of losers. Since there is only one winner the total number of games played is equal to 2n — 1, the number of losers. 