NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Forget the toss.
For 50 years, the ballpersons at the Open have thrown the ball to each other to clear the court, but this year they’ll be rolling the balls like they do at all other Grand Slam tournaments.
Officials say it is a way to be more inclusive when it comes to ballperson try-outs.
“It gives more people the opportunity who might not be able to throw the chance to actually try out and be a US Open Ballperson,” said ballperson Nicholas Zikos.
Every year, a huge crowd of people line up at the tennis center to get a chance to try out, and it’s open to everyone age 14 and older. The pay is minimum wage and the time commitment is about 10 days.
This year 500 people are expected to try-out and only 100 will be chosen.
So what does it take? Ask the experienced ballpersons.
“Well, definitely really important is speed and just paying attention to what’s going on,” said Vishal Balani.
“You just need to be athletic and have a lot of stamina,” added Hudson Kaylie.
For anyone interest in becoming a ballperson for this year’s U.S. Open, try-outs are next Tuesday, June 26.