'She didn't say sorry!' Meet the Auckland ball kid who had a tennis racquet thrown at him by a star player

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Source:

Seven Sharp

They are the unsung heroes of professional tennis tournaments, reclaiming loose balls and wiping the sweat from international sports stars in the searing sun.

Vision of Jack Condor's run-in with Jelena Ostapenko was seen around the world.
Source: Seven Sharp

It's a tough gig, which follows a competitive recruitment process.

Ball kids need to be on their game and their job isn't as easy as you might think. It can actually be quite hazardous.

A year ago in Auckland ball boy Jack Conder became famous for all the wrong reasons while working at the ASB Classic.

“I was doing baseline, so back of the court, Jelena Ostapenko from Latvia threw a racquet at me, I don’t know if it was on purpose or not.”

It caused a furore and her opponent challenged her actions.

Jack said she didn’t say sorry.

“It went on You Tube and got 1.8 million views,” he said.

“I was quite fine with it, because she’s a professional tennis player.

“I got to watch that match for free so I wasn't too bothered,” he said.

Even with the risks, Jack is looking forward to being a ball kid again next season.

“Some of my favourite players like Denis Shapovalov are coming so I’m pretty excited for that.”

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