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How much do ball boys and girls get paid at Wimbledon and do they get to keep their Ralph Lauren uniforms?

BALL boys and ball girls at Wimbledon play an important part in making sure games run smoothly.

Read on to find out more about the role at the world famous tournament, how well paid it is, and what the perks of the job are.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: Ball boys and girls warm up together ahead of day one of The Championships Wimbledon 2024 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 01, 2024 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Ball boys and girls warm up together ahead of day one of Wimbledon 2024
Getty

How much do ball boys and girls get paid at Wimbledon?

Ball boys and girls at Wimbledon generally get paid around £200 for the fortnight of the tennis tournament.

It’s not much for what can be quite a gruelling and difficult job.

There’s a lot of responsibility to make sure balls are retrieved and new ones are given quickly to players so play isn’t disrupted.

epa11449464 Ball boys and girls perform yoga ahead of the Wimbledon Championships 2024 in Wimbledon in London, Britain, 01 July 2024. EPA/NEIL HALL
Ball boys and girls perform yoga ahead of Wimbledon

Ball boys and girls have been known to collapse due to the heat, with the tournament often taking place in blazing July sunshine.

How many ball boys and girls are recruited for Wimbledon?

There are a lot of ball boys and girls needed at Wimbledon each year, with play taking place on multiple courts at the same time.

In total around 250 are chosen each year.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by James Marsh/REX/Shutterstock (14565034u) A ball boy picks up a ball. Wimbledon Tennis Championships, Day 1, The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, UK - 01 Jul 2024
A ball boy picks up a ball at Wimbledon
James Marsh/REX/Shutterstock

There are six teams of six selected who’ll just look after Centre Court and No.1 Court, which are the two main ones used for the biggest games.

A further six teams of six rotate around the rest of the main show courts, whilst the rest will rotate around the other courts in use.

They tend to work to a routine of one hour on, one hour off, due to how demanding the work can be – especially in the often hot July weather.


How many people apply to be a ball boy or ball girl at Wimbledon?

A huge number apply to be a ball boy or ball girl at Wimbledon each year.

Most years there are around a thousand applicants, however only pupils from around thirty London schools are able to put themselves forward.

These tend to be a mix of teens wanting to take part for a first time, and ones from previous years who loved it so much, they want to do it all over again.

Just under half of all ball boys and girls have taken part before, with the rest being brand new to it.

How old is the average ball boy or girl at Wimbledon?

The average age of a ball boy or girl at Wimbledon is fifteen.

Those applying for the first time are in either year nine or year ten at school.

Most ball boys and girls take part for two years.

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How much training is given to ball boys and girls at Wimbledon?

The training for ball boys and ball girls at Wimbledon is very intense, as it’s a physically demanding role.

It’s also a role that’s really important for the smooth running of matches.

STRICTLY EMBARGOED UNTIL 2230 SATURDAY 24TH JUNE Undated handout photo issued by Kensington Palace of the Princess of Wales joining a ball boy and girl practice session at the AELTC Indoor Tennis Courts during a visit to the All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon for a behind-the-scenes look at work of the ball boys and girls who are a key part of the tennis tournament. Issue date: Saturday June 24, 2023. PA Photo. They were guests at a training session for some of the young hopefuls aiming to be chosen for the around 250 ball boy and girl roles during the championships running from July 3-16 in south-west London. See PA story ROYAL Wimbledon. Photo credit should read: AELTC/Thomas Lovelock/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
The Princess of Wales took part in a ball boy and girl practice session in 2013
AELTC/Thomas Lovelock/PA

Training starts as early as February, when each ball boy and girl will take part in sessions once a fortnight at the Raynes Park Community Sport Ground.

It then moves over to Wimbledon after Easter, with weekly two-hour sessions.

These go on until mid June, right up to just before the tournament begins.

Do ball boys and girls get to keep their Ralph Lauren Wimbledon uniforms?

One of the biggest perks of working as a ball boy or ball girl at Wimbledon is being allowed to keep the Ralph Lauren uniform afterwards.

epa11451014 Close-up shows the wrist sweatband of a ball boy on the first day of play at the Wimbledon Championships, Wimbledon, Britain, 01 July 2024. EPA/NEIL HALL EDITORIAL USE ONLY
The outfits are designed by top American designer Ralph Lauren

The navy, green and purple outfits are as iconic at Wimbledon as strawberries and cream or an ice-cold Pimms.

They’re made in a stretch jersey fabric, meaning they should keep the ball boys and girls cool and comfortable in the summer sun.

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