Upcoming young tennis star Matty Morgan, 14, was allowed time off from Lydiard Park Academy at the end of the summer term to spend nine days as a ball boy for the Boston Lobsters Tennis Team during the World Team Tennis competition.
Matty flew to Boston on 8 July and spent three weeks with the family of his American tennis partner Evan Maguire, also a member of the competition support court team.
Mum Jackie explained: “My sister lives in Massachusetts and we go over every summer to visit. While we’re there Matty plays tennis at Newburyport Racquet Club, where he met Evan and where they were spotted last year by the Boston Lobsters team and invited to be ball boys.”
This year Matty performed his ball boy duties at all twelve of the Lobsters’ home games, captained by Andre Agassi, and had tenni bag carrying responsibilities for Irina Falconi, who played the ladies singles and ladies doubles matches when the team was at home.
He also got to meet tennis star John Isner, Lobster’s team player famous for beating Nicolas Mahut 70 – 68 in the fifth set of the longest tennis game ever at Wimbledon in 2010.
Describing his meeting with Isner, Matty said: “It was fantastic as I was able to watch how he played and this has helped me in my game. I caught the ball when John Isner served an ace and the commentator asked over the mic ‘how did that ball feel kid?’ and I said it hurt my hand.”
The icing on the cake is that the Boston Lobsters ball kids’ team leader Lauren Mihalchik has invited Matty to return next year. He said: “It’s an amazing opportunity and I feel so privileged to have been asked back. Now I just need to talk my Dad into paying for the flights.”
Matty arrived home the day before the Olympics started and was able to watch Andy Murray’s enthralling gold medal win against Roger Federer.
Top, Matty, centre, with Evan and former professional player Lyndsey Davenport
Bottom, the Lobster ball team with leader Lauren Mihalchik.