PHOTOBOMBING was taken to a new level when a Wigan Evening Post snap of Dave Whelan went viral.
But it was not the Wigan Athletic chairman that everyone was talking about – it was the unicycling youngster in the background.
Deanery High School pupil Matthew Hughes, 11, became a web sensation after the photo was posted on our website Wigan Today’s Facebook page, generating more than 12,000 views, 210 likes and 50 shares, plus dozens of positive comments.
Following our Facebook and Twitter appeal to find the quirky rider, dubbed #unicyclekid, Matthew, of Swinley, contacted the Evening Post and revealed it was him and how his popularity has grown since the picture was published. He said: “It is quite funny how I ended up photobombing Dave Whelan.
“I was just riding past and I looked at him as he is a legend in Wigan and then my friend pointed out the picture on Facebook.
“It is amazing to be noticed alongside Dave Whelan as he is a big name and I am a huge Latics fan. I’m flattered to get all this attention. A few people thought it was uncool to ride a unicycle, but now they think it’s cool.”
Matthew, who has a 16-year-old sister, Megan, took up the hobby more than a year ago and taught himself to ride by watching YouTube videos.
He said: “I like trying different and extreme things. It took me about a month to practice and keep my balance. I just taught myself through trial and error.
“I get a thrill when I ride it - I ride to school every day on my unicycle, I love it. I can do quite a few tricks on it as well. I can do a kick up mount, where I run up to the unicycle when it is on the floor, I do a kick off in the air with one foot on the peddle and then I put my left foot on the other peddle. I can also do a bunny hop where I jump in the air as I am riding and I can also jump off high things.”
One Facebooker, Kieran Hart, wrote: “Always see him near my house cruising home like an absolute boss. Glad I went to the same school as this legend!”
Another, Gemma Atherton, posted: “He goes past the Wigan Youth Zone on his way home every night. Cool kid!”
You can view the original picture and all comments on our Facebook page.