Lewis scores with the Gunners

PUBLISHED: 09:34 07 June 2007 | UPDATED: 21:42 29 May 2010

Lewis Hoy with the precious letter from Arsenal – Pic: Sarah Lucy Brown

Lewis Hoy with the precious letter from Arsenal - Pic: Sarah Lucy Brown

A 12-YEAR-OLD boy from Dunmow will be spending a year with Premiership footballers after gaining a place working for his favourite football club. Life-long Arsenal supporter Lewis Hoy of Waldgrooms, heard he had gained the coveted position of ballboy for

A 12-YEAR-OLD boy from Dunmow will be spending a year with Premiership footballers after gaining a place working for his favourite football club.

Life-long Arsenal supporter Lewis Hoy of Waldgrooms, heard he had gained the coveted position of ballboy for the football club on Thursday after attending trials at the Emirates Stadium in May.

"I was asleep in bed when my Mum woke me up saying I'd got a letter. I was nervous before I read it because I didn't think I had got through. I couldn't believe it when I found out," said Lewis. "It was such a good feeling."

Lewis, a pupil at Helena Romanes School, got the chance to be a ballboy after he was given a Junior Gunner Membership for his birthday in October 2006.

The membership means he can get tickets for matches. He also receives news letters about the club which include competitions he can enter, one of which was to become a ballboy for a season.

Approximately 70 children attended the trials in which they had to prove their skills in running, catching and throwing. From this group a squad of 20 boys and girls is chosen. This squad will act as the official ballboys and girls at every home match throughout the 2007/08 season.

Mum Sarah Tite is also an avid Gunners' fan. She said: "When he opened the letter he just grinned one of the biggest smiles I've seen. It was literally from ear to ear.

"I didn't know what to say. I just gave him a hug."

"I went and told my Nan and Grandad and then went off to my mate Matt's house," continued Lewis. "He was really pleased for me and said I was lucky to be able to meet all my favourite players."

Lewis is especially looking forward to meeting his hero Thierry Henry but admitted he didn't know what he was going to say when he finally got to meet the famous French star.

Like his heroes, Lewis has to attend pre-season training which starts on June 19 with a meeting where the procedure of what happens at a Premiership football match will be explained. He'll also be given his official Arsenal ballboy's kit.

Lewis and his new colleagues will first get to meet the players when they attend two practice sessions with the entire squad. This is to help them get over being so star-struck. After that, Lewis will be ball-boy at the pre-season friendly matches to help him get used to working in front of the crowds who pack into the stadium at every home match.

After all of that, Lewis will be ready for the first home match in August which will also be the first time he will ever see Arsenal play a premiership game.

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