Wimbledon is one of the most beloved tennis tournaments of all time, but regrettably, it hasn’t been without its share of disasters. Here are the five times it had to be canceled after the ball boys and girls adopted a pack attitude.

1. Wimbledon 1921: When the dominant ball boy took control

While ball sons had always been an integral part of Wimbledon , no one could have foreseen what happened in 1921, when one large ball son, known as the Pack Leader, took control of the small ball boys and made a horde so powerful that the entire tournament had to be shut down. It all started on the fifth period of play-act, a 5-foot, 6-inch 13 -year-old boy on middle tribunal demanded through a series of cryptic limb waves and hand signals that the other ball sons bring every single ball on the court back to him, instead of to the players. At first, organizers were hard-pressed to cancel the entire tournament, but merely hours after the fight for province began, the Pack Leader had stolen more than 12 different racquets and instructed the younger ball boys to form a protective shield around him by both running back and forth across the court and rolling balls along the ground to trip any member of the authorities concerned who got too close. At that level, officials had no choice but to send the players and crowd of tennis devotees home for their own safety.

2. Wimbledon 1999: When the ball boys constructed a complex tunnel system underneath the stadium

According to firsthand accounts, 1999 will always be the year that bystanders say the ball boys “just started digging, ” and eventually, with their hive-mind attitude, were able to delve a complex tunnel system beneath the stadium that connected all 18 of the tournament’s grass courtrooms. During a match between Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras, the Pack Leader reportedly let out a loud yelping, triggering several ball boys to delve a series of holes along the outer resounding of the court, until a line magistrate mistakenly stepped in one and violated his ankle. Sensing his weakness and starvation from expending the day retrieving balls for musicians, the ball boys immediately abandoned their positions and dragged the injured, screaming employee across the grass and down into their complex placed of tunnels, and he was never seen again. Dreading for their safety, Agassi, Sampras, and the remaining players plummeted out of the tournament, objective that year’s tournament for good.

3. Wimbledon 1977: When the ball boys tried to mate with the ball girls

Wimbledon 1977 was the first tennis tournament to have ball girls. Nonetheless, some believe that the inclusion of girls for the first time inadvertently triggered the ball boys to perform elaborated mating rites that were highly disruptive to ongoing matches. Regrettably for organizers, while the decision was originally hailed as inclusive, the Pack Leader quickly noticed that every single one of the new ball daughters was in hot, and started to be hoarding equipment to try and impress them. According to firsthand accounts, after sprinting back and forth in a seductive style, the ball boys, brimming with hormones, eventually became territorial and assaulted anyone they perceived as a threat, including tennis star Billie Jean King. After she got too close to a ball daughter for a ball boy’s inclination, the largest ball son trapped her in the net at center tribunal, where she remained stuck for hours. After King was injured in the accident, she sued Wimbledon, giving organizers no choice but to cancel the tournament.

4. Wimbledon 2012: “The Infestation”

“The Infestation, ” or Wimbledon 2012, will, regrettably, go down in history as the tournament where the ball boys and girls were asked to work during a nighttime match, watched the moon for the first time, and subsequently, would not stop roar. At around 8 p. m ., when the sunshine had finally determined, all 250 ball boys and ball daughters participating in the tournament simultaneously looked up at the sky, stopped catching balls, stood extremely still, and started chanting extremely aloud until tournament organizers closed the retractable roof, which indignation the packs of ball boys and girls, who had begun to venerated the moon as a deity. Deprived of their new supreme lord, the concourses of 9- to 12 -year-olds begin attacking devotees, looking for a sacrifice to the moon that would attain the roof open once more. Wimbledon authorities rapidly opened the roof and conceded the stadium to the ball children, who for the coming five months, used the structure as a monastery.

5. Wimbledon 2004: When the ball boys escaped

Sadly, the most devastating incident at Wimbledon involved the coordinated efforts of ball boys and ball daughters utilizing their pack mentality to stage a jaw-dropping flee in which they confused organizers, go from the tournament, and were never seen again. During a finals match between Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova, the ball boys and ball girls received small-scale holes within the stadium’s walls, and one by one slipped through them, balls in hand, before running into the lumbers and never turning back. Without anyone left to collect balls, organizers had no choice but to shut the tournament down. Thirteen years later, legend says that you can still find the ball boys and ball daughters living in areas outside London, running back and forth in the timbers, sprinting between the trees, passing balls to one another.

Wow. Should this ever happen again, we’re sure everyone at Wimbledon will have it under control! Come 2018, we’re sure the ball boys and girls will be properly inspected to make sure they find themselves domesticated enough to keep the tournament running !

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