Why The Australian Open Ball Boy Wet Himself For The Good Of Tennis
On point 1, news that the ball boy can offer more entertainment than a rally with Boris Becker is heartening.
The report tells us:
Shocked tennis fans at the Australian Open were forced to sit through an unscheduled forty minute interval, when a ball boy wet himself. 2000 stunned supporters were enjoying Tuesday’s Court 10 match between American Donald Young and Belgian Christopher Rochus, when the nervous ball boy had an accident.
At Wimbledon, the lad’s embarrassment would have been ensued by a bevy of men putting down their copies of Nuts and running onto the damp playing surface dragging a rain cover behind them.
But we are getting ahead of ourselves. Lets us consider the evidence. And let us investigate whether the lad was part of betting syndicate, or meant it a jape?
Young had just broken his opponent’s serve when the youngster lost control and a damp patch began to appear at the corner of the blue synthetic court.
At a key juncture of the match, the lad seeped. Can betting pattern be looked at?
Speaking after his four set victory, promising tennis star Young, 20, said: “The ball kid peed on himself. It was very unfortunate. It took a while to replace him. Then they had to put the sawdust down, or whatever you put down when somebody throws up.
“Then they had to use the blower to dry the court, but the blower had no gas in it, so that took even more time.”
Did someone remove the gas?
And then what of another theory: it made the game more interesting to the casual observer? Football in the 1970s was not always fun to watch, but weeing down the terracing at least made for an interesting side bet. What is the scrum in rugby but a chance to relieve oneself in private?
Can the same be done for tennis, a game that prides itself on niceties, civility and routine breaks in play that serve no useful purpose other then to allow everyone to go to the toilet between grunts?
Unless you’re a ball boy – in which you have to hanker for those halcyon days when the game was played in flannels…