Ball boy's $49k blunder from Serena Williams' US Open meltdown

Serena Williams' infamous 2018 US Open implosion was one of the biggest sports stories of the year.

Arguably, it was one of the biggest controversies ever seen in a grand slam tennis final.

Suffice to say the racquet the 23-time grand slam winner smashed up during the decider against Naomi Osaka is probably worth a bit of money.

It therefore goes to say that anyone lucky enough to score said racquet would be remiss to part with it unless generously compensated.

Spare a thought then for ball boy Justin Arrington-Holmes, who was given the racquet by Williams but later sold it for $500 to a collectibles store in New York City.

Pictured here, Serena Williams sparked controversy during her infamous 2018 US Open meltdown.
Serena Williams lost to Naomi Osaka after her infamous 2018 US Open meltdown. Pic: Getty

Incredibly, that same piece of memorabilia that the ball boy gave up for just $500 is estimated to be worth as much as 100 times that.

Ken Goldin, who founded the auction house, said the racquet could fetch as much as a staggering $50,000.

“I think the low end would be $10,000, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it goes to $25,000 or $50,000," he told the New York Times.

Williams sparked headlines around the world when she called umpire Carlos Ramos a “thief” in a furious mid-match rant against Osaka in the 2018 US Open final.

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It all began when the American superstar was given a code violation after Ramos judged Patrick Mouratoglou took part in illegal coaching from the stands.

Williams, who famously told Ramos she would not cheat because she had a daughter, reached the Wimbledon and US Open finals in her first season since childbirth.

Serena Williams holds the racquet that is set to fetch a large sum at auction.
The racquet Serena Williams destroyed at the 2018 US Open is set to fetch a large sum at auction. Pic: Getty

The crowd’s booing of Ramos during the trophy ceremony left Osaka, who backed up her maiden title by winning the Australian Open in January, in tears.

Williams comforted the Japanese youngster and apologised to her rival on the night.

American star stranded just short of record

The younger Williams sister still remains one grand slam title behind Australian legend Margaret Court's record 24 major titles.

The 37-year-old had another chance to equal Court's record in this year's US Open final in September, but again came up short - this time against Canadian Bianca Andreescu.

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It was the fourth consecutive grand slam final defeat for the American since returning from maternity leave after the birth of her daughter Olympia in September 2017.

With Williams injury free and finally back to full fitness, her 2019 heartbreak was arguably the toughest to stomach for the tennis legend.

Williams also tasted defeat to Angelique Kerber and Simona Halep in the past two Wimbledon deciders, with time appearing to be running out for the 38-year-old to catch Court.

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