- Eco zealots halted Guaff’s march to semifinal victory for almost an hour
- It was largely caused by one protestor’s decision to glue himself to the floor
- The eco thugs were taunted and booed by furious tennis fans
Eco-zealot group Extinction Rebellion sparked fury after halting Coco Guaff’s US Open semifinal win – before tennis fans taunted and jeered as the protestors were hauled out of Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Three climate thugs brought Guaff’s game vs. Karolina Muchova to a stop for almost an hour as they howled ‘End fossil fuels’, with one deciding to glue his feet to the concrete in protest.
But spectators had the last laugh as the demonstrators – whose group hails from the UK and has repeatedly frustrated events in the name of global warming – were thrown out of the stadium surrounded by chants of ‘You suck!’ and ‘F*** you!’
The ESPN broadcast cut away from the event as the two men and one woman made a stance against the usage of fossil fuels. The three were wearing shirts emblazoned with ‘end fossil fuels’ and the Extinction Rebellion logo.
After the NYPD was called in to handle the eco fanatics, officers struggled to remove the protestor who secured himself to the floor, leading to further delay. Cops eventually determined it would be safe to unstick him, and he was seen shouting back at the booing audience as he was hauled away.
The disruption comes just days after another attendee was thrown out of the stadium after a fan allegedly shouted a Nazi phrase from the crowd.
Three protestors were responsible for an extraordinary delay during the U.S. Open semifinal
The most troublesome protestor of the trident glued his feet to the concrete floor beneath him
The protestor glued his feet to the concrete inside Arthur Ashe Stadium late on Saturday night
The zealot was removed from the concrete after officers determined it would be safe
According to AP, one of the protesters, who identified himself only as Ian, said they wanted the U.S. Open to be accountable because it has sponsors who are large corporations whose policies are contributing to global warming.
‘We are not trying to harm the athletes in any way. We have nothing against the sport, but we are really trying to draw attention to an issue here that there will be no tennis left for anybody in the world to enjoy,’ he said.
Gauff was clearly frustrated by the delay and did not want to go off, initially asking why they were ‘negotiating’ with the protesters and sarcastically asking if it was a ‘hostage situation’.
Her coach, Brad Gilbert, shouted down to the Tournament Referee ‘this is a joke!’, however it then became clear that the situation was more complicated when the protestor chose glue instead of shoes as his preferred footwear.
Boos rang out across the stadium as many fans were confused why it took almost an hour to remove the demonstrators, leading to a bulletin on the indoor screens asking for ‘patience.’
The polarizing trio are part of the disruptive Extinction Rebellion Group, which has sparked fury on numerous occasions in recent years as members glue themselves to famous paintings and climbing on structures.
The aim of the politically-charged entity is to cause civil disobedience as a means of spotlighting issues relating to supposed environmental degradation.
Its maddening reappearance this week comes after the group appeared to swear off public disruption in December, feeling that ruining people’s days was not bringing supporters to their cause.
Coco Gauff was clearly frustrated by the delay and did not want to go off the court up one set
The trio appear to be members of eco-fanatic group Extinction Rebellion, which has sparked outrage in recent years by disrupting events in the name of fighting global warming
Many in the crowd were angry the glued-down protestor was not removed quicker, as it took the NYPD time to unstick the activist
When the delays were announced, both players were left to keep themselves occupied in the tournament gym, with Gilbert giving Gauff a pep talk. Gauff was finally recalled to the court 42 minutes after the last point had been played.
Naturally, many around the trio in the nosebleeds were disgruntled at the boorish behavior.
Spectators jeered, booed and yelled various orders such as ‘sit down’, even saying ‘you suck’ to the troublesome trio.
While ESPN provided a vague description, they did acknowledge it was an ‘environmental protest.’
Gauff sat on her sideline bench for a bit during the break in the match, eating fruit out of a plastic container, before then getting some tennis balls and hitting a few practice serves. Muchova was briefly visited by a trainer during the interruption.
Later, both players headed toward the locker room as the delay continued. Gauff sat on a treadmill, a towel draped over her lap, while chatting with members of her team.
It is the latest in a recent series of protests at sporting events – and tennis, in particular – related to the use of fossil fuels.
At Wimbledon in July, two matches were interrupted when environmental activists jumped out of the stands at Court 18 and scattered orange confetti on the grass.
At a U.S. Open tune-up tournament in Washington last month, about a dozen people were asked to leave the site after chanting and displaying signs protesting the use of fossil fuels.
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