Tennis is a gentleman’s game where sportsmanship and respect are deeply engrained in the DNA of the sport. Every now and then, we witness players showing those very traits for one another on both sides of the net. Sometimes, we even see them helping those around them, too. British tennis player Jodie Burrage showed the 2022 Wimbledon crowd how important it is to help each other in times of adversity. The player noticed one of the ballboys was feeling faint on the sidelines during her match and she rushed to his rescue.
A Lesson on Humanity for the Wimbledon Crowd
Sports can teach us a lot about spirit, discipline, and… humanity. Not many professional athletes would stop their match or tournament just so they can help a person on the sidelines.
That’s why, when world No. 416, Jodie Burrage noticed a ballboy was about to faint, she immediately took action and interrupted her match to check up on him. She first gave him a sports drink and some nutritional gel to help get his strength back. Seeing that those failed to get him the energy boost he needed, Burrage gave him a bag of candy that one of the spectators gave her. After a ten-minute break to help get the ballboy off the court, the 23-year-old Brit returned to her Wimbledon match.
A Mutual Effort
Unfortunately for Burrage, her heroic act didn’t help her win the match against Lesia Tsurenko, on the opening day of Wimbledon. However, it did manage to win her the hearts of everyone watching. In fact, if it weren’t for that spectator offering their bag of Percy Pig, the boy wouldn’t have received the energy boost he needed to be safely escorted off the court. This only goes to show how the importance of helping each other – whether we’re at a Wimbledon match or anywhere else.
Every year, The Associated Press releases its list of athletes of the year. Just last weekend, the organization announced tennis star Naomi Osaka and Los Angeles Laker LeBron James as their top choices.
LeBron and Osaka Weren’t Chosen Solely for Their Sports Achievements
Even though LeBron and his team emerged victorious in the NBA championship and Osaka won the 2020 US Open tennis tournament, that wasn’t reason enough to crown them the king and queen of sports for the past year. By casting their votes for them, the jury also commended James and Naomi for their political and social activism outside the playfield.
Both players have openly expressed their support for protests against racism and police brutality by following the Black Lives Matter movement, with Osaka even wearing face masks during the US Open showing the names of Americans wrongfully killed by law enforcement officials.
LeBron James — AP’s Male Athlete of the Decade (for 2019)
The Associated Press has long expressed its respect for LeBron and his achievements, even choosing him as the 2019 male athlete of the decade. James has been quite vocal about his criticism of President Trump, who has spoken poorly of NBA players protesting against racial inequality in the past.
LeBron’s career spans over 17 years, during which time he’s rightfully earned the all-time playoffs points record, as well as third place in all-time points and eight ranking in career assists. That’s just a fraction of his achievements on the court. He’s made a parallel career off the playfield through endorsement contracts, TV commercials, books, and movies. The talented basketball player even hosted an episode of Saturday Night Live, as well as the ESPY Awards.
In addition to fighting for racial equality, LeBron also founded a charity to help improve access to educational opportunities for students in his hometown of Akron, Ohio.