Chelsea player Eden Hazard was sent off last week after aiming a kick at a Swansea ballboy. Here are some video clips of the most notorious ballboys – and girls – in recent sporting history
Charlie Morgan, the ballboy who became involved in last Wednesday's football match between Swansea and Chelsea (time-wasting, then taking a kick from a player for it) got a mixed reaction in the aftermath. Some in football thought him a victim. "You can't kick a ballboy," said Everton player Phil Neville. Others weren't so sympathetic. "Kid is a prat," said ex-striker Stan Collymore. Many others weighed in.
It isn't the first time a ballboy or ballgirl has got involved in a sporting contest, for good or ill. Nor the first time they have been cast as hero or villain in the aftermath…
In the middle of a tense tennis match between Andy Murray and Viktor Troicki in 2011, an unnamed French ballboy ran on to court early, costing Troicki. "Jumped in and messed up my point," complained the Serb, who later kicked a ball out of reach of the scurrying teen, earning boos from the crowd.
Last year, a young ballgirl at a San Diego Padres baseball game – named only as Lisa – made a stunning catch at the edge of the field, saving a cowering spectator from getting hit. "Oh! Nice!" shouted the TV commentator, ruining the moment by adding: "Hubba hubba!"
In 2006, during a football game between Brazilian clubs Atletico Sorocaba and Santacruzense, a 51-year-old coach called José Carlos Vieira, acting as ballboy for the match, dribbled the ball into Sorocaba's net. "When I saw the goal I just kicked [it] in," he said afterwards. Santacruzense were losing 1-0 at the time and in a moment of legend-making stupidity the ref allowed the equaliser to stand.
Ballboy Dylan Colaci made a cool, one-handed catch from his perch on the sidelines in the middle of an Australian Open match last year. One commentator compared him to Aussie cricket legend Ricky Ponting, and the 14-year-old was afterwards bombarded with interview requests. "I just stuck my hand out," he told reporters.
For a few heady hours in summer 2011, everybody wondered who the athletic, almost-superhuman ballgirl was who was filmed making an acrobatic jumping catch during a baseball game in Fresno, California. It turned out to be Kiralee Hayashi, a former gymnast turned stunt woman, appearing in a cunning hoax video made to promote a sports drink. A very cool catch but fake.