'Players found themselves in a tug-of-war': Bid to replace ball boys with dogs at Wimbledon flops

'Players found themselves in a tug-of-war': Bid to replace ball boys with dogs at Wimbledon flops

The organisers were keen on experimenting to see if dogs can do a job as an apt replacement for ball boys and girls but the experiment failed.

A bid to replace ball boys and girls with dogs at Wimbledon failed miserably as the pooches refused to give the ball back in time despite being trained for the same. Ball boys and girls have been traditionally used at the Wimbledon for several decades now and the trend continues in the ongoing edition of the prestigious tournament. The organisers were keen on experimenting to see if dogs can do a job as an apt replacement for ball boys and girls but the experiment failed.

The dogs were trained at the Wilton Tennis Club in London where they underwent speed and agility tests among others, as per a report in Daily Star. The dogs were also trained to run up and down across the court and high jump over the nets. However, the experiment didn't yield desired results as the organisers decided humans were quick and batter.

Dogs were also trained to fetch the tennis ball swiftly and hand it back in time but they often refused to give the ball back, Thus, it was decided that the pooches are not ideal to replace the ball boys and girls, who are far more effective. Martin Schiller, the coordinator of the Wilton Tennis Club, revealed the dogs were excellent at fetching the ball quickly but were not so keen on returning them.

"Our players did find themselves in a game of tug-of-war," he said. "We had a stash of treats on the sidelines to offer up as a bit of encouragement which certainly did the trick," Schiller added.

'Players found themselves in a tug-of-war': Bid to replace ball boys with dogs at Wimbledon flops
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The idea to use dogs instead of ball boys and girls at Wimbledon was first proposed by insurance provider ManyPets, who had contacted the Wimbledon organisers over a trial. However, they are yet to receive a formal response from the organisers. There are 250 ball boys and girls who are currently working at Wimbledon.

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