Melbourne, 17 January 2011 | Eloise Johnstone

If you love tennis, have great ball skills, or just think you look good in yellow, now is the time to apply to be an MLC Ballkid at Australian Open 2012.

Prospective MLC Ballkids applications are live online from now until 12pm February 3 2011.

Every year, hundreds of kids get the chance to get up close to tennis superstars during the Australian Open.

However, what you may not see as you look jealousy on as a girl or boy passes Roger Federer his sweaty towel, is that it took a lot of commitment and time to get to that position.

If you are a hard worker, love working in a team, and have a passion for tennis, then maybe next year this could be you!

Applicants must be between 12 and 15 years of age, have a good understanding of tennis, and have unrestricted availability from 10 January – 29 January 2012.

If your initial application is successful, selection trials for Level 1 run in March and April 2011, and Level 2 in May.

From there, if you are selected, training sessions are held throughout September, October and November, so our Ballkids are well prepared for when the real action begins in January.

Becoming an MLC Ballkid is a long journey and involves great commitment from the kids themselves as well as their families.

However, it is also a rewarding journey, as you could be the next person to hand the ball to your tennis hero.

Apply online now.