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Ruud “a bit scared, honestly” : Climate protester interrupts second French Open men’s semi-final

Protests are nothing new at Grand Slam tennis tournaments and the French Open is no exception. Another one happened on Friday during a men’s singles semi-final match on Court Phlippe-Chatrier.

A protester called Alizé during Roland-Garros 2022 semi-finale Protestor ties herself to the net during the semi final between Casper Ruud and Marin Cilic (© AI / Reuters / Panoramic)

The second men’s singles semi-final at Roland-Garros was briefly interrupted during the third set by an environmental protester.

Wearing a shirt that read “WE HAVE 1028 DAYS LEFT,” a 22-year-old woman ran onto the court with Casper Ruud serving at 3-6, 6-4, 4-1, 15-15 against Marin Cilic. She tied herself to the net and knelt down on the clay before security eventually carried her off.

“(I was) a bit scared, honestly,” Ruud said. ”I didn’t really know what was going on.” He added that it was “a tricky situation” and ”awkward” waiting around for a surprisingly long time for security to take care of the situation.

“When it comes to this protest, it was a little bit…what should I say…nasty is maybe a good word,” the Norwegian explained. “I didn’t really know how to react to it, and I didn’t know if…because I only saw her back…I didn’t know if she was holding anything or what was around her neck. I didn’t get to see too much.
So it was a little bit (of a) tricky and difficult situation; never happened to me before. So we were taken [off the court] for six, seven minutes and I got to regroup a little bit and got my flow going again.”

The woman appeared to be a member of the French activist group Derniere Renovation. Their Twitter account posted (translated from French): “22-year-old Alizée stepped onto the tennis court during the Ruud-Cilic semi-final to draw attention to the climate emergency and the demand for the Last Renovation campaign.”

On the DR website, a statement made by Alizée was released: “We are in 2022 and it is time to face reality, the world to which politicians are sending us is a world to which Roland Garros will no longer be able to exist.

“Today, I entered the field because I can no longer take the risk of doing nothing in the face of the climate emergency.”

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