Towel tussle boy found after appeal

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Towel tussle: Fans compete for Jack Sock souvenir
Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app. Click for full times.

A young tennis fan who had US star Jack Sock’s Wimbledon towel snatched out of his hands by an older man has been tracked down after a social media hunt.

Sock had appealed for help to find the boy after an incident at the end of his first-round win over Chile’s Christian Garin on Tuesday.

He threw his towel towards a supporter, leading to a tug-of-war between two spectators.

That led to a campaign that captured the attention of the US Open, the Australian Open and social media.

“If anyone knows who this kid is who had the towel ripped out of his hands by the elderly man, comment his name so I can be sure to get him his own towel,” Sock said on Instagram.

The players’ agent said on Wednesday that the young fan, who has not been named, had been found.

“The boy messaged Jack directly on Instagram and is from Ireland,” Mary Jane Orman said in a statement.

“He is gone home now but Jack invited him to his matches and said he will send him a towel.”

It is a common Wimbledon gesture for a player to throw his official towel into the crowd for a lucky fan.

The younger supporter appears to ask 17th seed Sock for the towel, but it is not clear if his rival fan knew it was for the boy.

After Sock chucks his towel, both fans grab it – with the older male winning the brief tug-of-war, keeping the souvenir.

The man has been strongly criticised for seizing the towel on social media, while the fan who lost out has received sympathetic messages from fans.

The US Open replied to Sock’s tweet: “If you find out, we’d like to send him a US Open towel. Australian Open, Roland Garros, maybe send one of yours as well for a Slam sweep?”

The Australian Open quickly replied “no sweat”, while fans added tweets of well-wishes for the disappointed youngster.

Are you the fan? Contact BBC Sport on 0161 335 6414.

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