If you are watching the Australian Open action in the coming weeks, keep your eyes open for some familiar faces in the blue hats.By Hannah Driscoll
If you are watching the Australian Open action in the coming weeks, keep your eyes open for some familiar faces in the blue hats.
Shepparton’s Jordon Butts, Emily Balaburov, Olivia Quigley, Michael Romeo, Angus Hicks, Geoffrey Thompson and Angus Press are among more than 380 ball kids selected to take part in the Grand Slam tournament.
The vast majority of the ball kids are from Victoria, but some are from interstate and there are also children from South Korea and China taking part.
The main draw begins on Monday, but the ball kids’ duties will begin today with the qualifying rounds.
This is the first time 13-year-old Butts has been selected to be a ball kid.
Applicants must be aged between 12 and 15 years old and pass several training stages before being selected.
Butts first tried out at Wangaratta before going to Melbourne and also travelled to Melbourne for trainings on Sundays after he was selected.
He said the ball kids were presented with their hats yesterday during orientation and had their photo taken with Frenchman Jo Wilfred Tsonga.
He also saw world No.
Butts said it would be great if he saw 17-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer.
‘‘I’m really looking forward to it. It will be a great experience for me and it will be fun getting close to the players,’’ he said.
Mooroopna Lawn Tennis Club coach Mark Mills is a ball kids operations team manager for the tournament and said the ball kids were ‘‘really keen to get out on the court’’.
He said the ball kids were graded on their performance each day and the better they do, the better their chance of being scheduled for the main courts or the finals.
‘‘The kids who have been selected have done an exceptionally good job to make it this far and should be proud of what they’ve done,’’ Mills said.
‘‘Most of the kids play tennis and I am sure they will really get a lot out of being down there at ground level and actually seeing how hard some of those players hit the ball and how fast they move.’’
The Shepparton-based Ambulance Employees Union representative has slammed the latest wage offer from the Victorian Government as 'misleading and insufficient'.
After a tennis career spanning 62 years, of which the last 35 years have been as a coach, Yarrawonga's Jon Coleman is set to retire at the end of 2013.
The recent Kyabram Master Pairs, played over six days with crack sides from near and far, attracted some talented bowlers eager to win the prestige event.
Dempsie Maconachie has been accepted into Jason Coleman’s Ministry of Dance in Melbourne.
Rochester resident Ken Hocking has chosen to use his Christmas lights display to draw attention to a support group for brain tumour patients.
Kyabram Lawn Tennis Club’s annual junior singles tournament again attracted good numbers from across the district.
But have opponents given up the fight?
Tocumwal Pre-School students are proudly flying their KITE at the Tocumwal Lions Community Hostel.
Tooborac Fire Brigade visited Tooborac Primary School last Tuesday to help the school complete its bushfire emergency management plan.
Residents urged to renew fruit fly baits to support local orchards.
Tim Hillier became the first Deniliquin Rhino to notch up a century in the Murray Valley Cricket Association with a sterling 104 against Cobram on Saturday.
Sheep producers backcrossing away from the Dohne breed to Poll Merinos with the perception of improving wool quality have been urged to consider their gross margins.
The hunt is on for a buyer for Benalla and Mansfield Toyota after the business went into receivership last fortnight.
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