Tennis stars are indulging in a strange new craze at this year’s Wimbledon competition… they’re sniffing their balls.
Now before you start thinking dirty thoughts, it’s not like that. The players are sniffing their brand new tennis balls when they’re given them, you may have noticed.
The craze was started by Dominika Cibulkova, the women’s tennis world No. 9, who’s been spotted getting a noseful of that new ball smell several times while on court.
Cibulkova is apparently such an avid ball sniffer that she can even identify where different tennis balls come from just from the way they smell.
At last year’s competition she managed to identify several balls to the tournament where they were originally used while blindfolded.
People have speculated that Cibulkova sniffs the balls for luck but she’s denied that claiming she just does it because she likes the smell of the balls, which is fair enough.
Cibulkova isn’t the only tennis ace to indulge in smelling her balls though. Jamie Murray, brother of Andy Murray, has also been spotted getting a good whiff.
On Friday he held three balls in one hand before sniffing them for good luck.
Superstition? Habit? It’s all the same to the ball sniffers. And who’s going to argue with them if they lift a trophy at the end of it?