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I notice if the ballboy/girl is on the left they always crouch, and if they are on the right they always stand. Why?

2 Answers 2


Because the side they stand on is next to the Referee's stand and the ballkids blend into the shape of the stand. Whereas, on the side the crouch, they do it to minimize peripheal distractions to the players.

  • If there's peripheral distractions when standing then wouldn't the referee's stand itself be a distraction?
    – Allure
    Jan 31, 2022 at 3:10
  • 1
    @Allure yes, but the chair has to be supported on something. We haven't invented anti-gravity plating required for a floating umpire's chair, and a chair extended out on a cherrypicker type arm would look weird and be impractical.
    – Bohemian
    Jan 31, 2022 at 5:18
  • @Bohemian If the umpire's chair is a distraction, then wouldn't it be moved somewhere else for the benefit of the players? It's surprising to me that this kind of thing isn't done if it makes the players play better.
    – Allure
    Jan 31, 2022 at 13:11
  • It also looks like at the French open, the ballboy/girl crouches on both sides of the court.
    – Allure
    Jan 31, 2022 at 13:12
  • @allure the umpire must be positioned high and as near to the court as practical so (s)he can see where the ball lands near all lines so (s)he can overrule line calls, and to a lesser extent hear player dialog if required. Note that in the Australian Open just played, there were no linesmen because the tournament switched to all electronic line calls, so perhaps the umpires chair could be positioned back away from the court somewhat, given that overruling is no longer possible from the umpire.
    – Bohemian
    Jan 31, 2022 at 14:25

The ball boys or girls crunch to reduce distraction to the players. If they stand, they have to blend into the referees stand.

  • You basically just copied Texist's answer. Feb 9, 2022 at 7:14

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