Sport: Shattered ball boy the final victim of Serena saga - - PressFrom - Australia

Sport Shattered ball boy the final victim of Serena saga

06:40  19 november  2019
06:40  19 november  2019 Source:

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Serena Williams et al. looking at the camera: Williams blasts Ramos© Getty Williams blasts Ramos A butterfly flaps its wings in Brazil and sets off a tornado in Texas.

Serena Williams smashes her racquet in 2018 and a ball boy loses $70,000 14-months later.

It's chaos theory in full effect, and no one, not even Justin Arrington-Holmes could have predicted the sequence of events that led to his misfortune.

When Williams spiralled out of control in her now infamous US Open final meltdown loss to prodigy Naomi Osaka, the world's gaze firmly fixed on Flushing Meadows.

How could one of the most respected figures in the history of sport unravel in an all-consuming outburst of unchecked emotion?

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Issued three code violations from umpire Carlos Ramos, Williams collapsed to a straight-sets defeat in front of a shocked home crowd.

Only the closing scene of Osaka hiding her tears while cradling her first grand slam trophy was enough to send the superstar crashing back to earth.

What followed was a fallout the likes of which had rarely been seen in world sport.

Serena Williams et al. that are talking to each other: Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams© Getty Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams

Months of back-and-forth between those in the pro-Williams camp, Osaka supporters and the sport's governing bodies played out in one of the most highly publicised periods in tennis history.

When all was said and done, no one had emerged unscathed. And 14-months-later the incident has claimed another victim.

Williams and Osaka have enjoyed success on the women's pro circuit since, with the latter claiming the 2019 Australian Open. But it's 2018 US Open Final ball boy Arrington-Holmes who is now beside himself.

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The American legend was the victim of a draconian enforcement of the rules in the US Open final . But her reaction exposed the one flaw in her game.

The 21-year-old university student who became the one-time owner of the racquet used by Williams during her blow-up has just seen a once in a lifetime payday flash before his eyes.

a person holding a racket on a court: Williams' smashed racquet© Getty Williams' smashed racquet

Arrington-Holmes was gifted the demolished piece of sporting memorabilia by Williams herself after the match, having made friends with the superstar during his time as a ball boy at the US Open.

He told the New York Times he didn't think much about it in the moment and put the racquet it in his closet.

A budding medical student, Arrington-Holmes was in need for some pocket money when he remembered the piece of sports history in his room and sold it to Brigandi Coins and Collectibles in Manhattan some time later.

He pounced at an offer of around $700, handing over the racquet as well as a witness statement letter of authenticity.

a person standing in front of a crowd: Serena Williams yells at umpire Carlos Ramos during the 2018 US Open final.© EPA/AAP Serena Williams yells at umpire Carlos Ramos during the 2018 US Open final.

Arrington-Holmes said he hadn't even considered his mistake until he was recently contacted by the New York Times and learned he could have turned the iconic piece of memorabilia into $70,000.

"Looking back I wish I'd had someone help me with the process," he said. "I was not familiar with how any of this works. I just wanted to get rid of it."

Williams' smashed racquet is now being auctioned off online this week by Goldin Auctions.

Goldin Auctions founder Ken Goldin believes the item could reach a price of up to $70,000 when it concludes on December 7, with the bidding opening at $5,500.

"I think the low end would be $10,000, and I wouldn't be surprised if it goes to $25,000 or $50,000," said Goldin.

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