US Open 2023: Climate Protesters Disrupt Coco Gauff vs Karolina Muchova Semifinal as One Glues Feet to Ground Delaying Match by an Hour [WATCH]

The disruption comes just days after another fan was thrown out of the stadium for allegedly shouting a Nazi phrase from the crowd.

The first women's singles semifinal featuring home favorite, Coco Gauff, and Czech Republic's Karolina Muchova at the ongoing US Open was interrupted by anti-fuel activists from the eco-zealot group Extinction Rebellion during the second set on Thursday. This disruption occurred as Muchova, who was trailing 4-6, 0-1, was preparing to serve in the second set.

Three anti-fossil fuel thugs who were in the upper tiers of the stadium stood up and started chanting "End fossil fuels," sparking fury as the match had to be halted for nearly an hour. Both Gauff and Muchova headed towards the locker room as the organizers tried to solve the situation and returned later to resume play.

Unexpected Interruption

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Two climate change activists seen chanting "End fossil fuels” from the stands during the Coco Gauff vs Karolina Muchova Semifinal semifinal at the US Open Twitter

However, spectators had the last laugh as the demonstrators, belonging to a UK-based group known for disrupting events in the name of global warming, were thrown out of the stadium amid a chorus of chants from the crowd, including "You suck!" and "F*** you!"

During the incident, the ESPN broadcast decided to cut away from the event as two men and one woman took a stance against the use of fossil fuels. All three were wearing shirts bearing the "end fossil fuels" message and the logo of the Extinction Rebellion movement.

The New York Police Department (NYPD) was called in to handle the activists but faced difficulty in removing the protester who had fastened himself to the floor. This led to further delays in the match. Eventually, police determined it was safe to detach the protester, who could be seen shouting back at the booing audience as he was removed.

The disruption comes just days after another fan was thrown out of the stadium for allegedly shouting a Nazi phrase from the crowd.

As per the Associated Press (AP), one of the protesters, who went by the name Ian, said that their aim was to hold the U.S. Open accountable. They pointed out that the tournament has sponsors that are major corporations, and they believe these corporations' policies are contributing to global warming.

Climate protesters
One of the climate protesters glued his feet to the ground Twitter

"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.

Unnecessary Delay and Frustration for Players

Coco Gauff's frustration was evident during the delay, as she initially questioned why there was a negotiation with the protesters and sarcastically asked if it was akin to a "hostage situation."

Her coach, Brad Gilbert, shouted down to the Tournament Referee, "this is a joke!"

The situation got even more complicated when it became apparent that one of the protesters had used glue instead of conventional shoes to secure themselves.

This perplexing delay prompted boos from the stadium's spectators, who were understandably confused about why it took nearly an hour to remove the demonstrators. In response to the growing impatience, a bulletin was displayed on the indoor screens requesting the audience's "patience."

The protesters, who are part of the Extinction Rebellion Group, have a history of causing disruptions. They have previously made headlines for gluing themselves to famous paintings and scaling structures in protest.

The politically charged group has a mission centered on using civil disobedience as a means to draw attention to issues related to what they perceive as environmental degradation. Their disruptive actions aim to highlight these concerns.

It's notable that the group had seemingly decided to tone down their public disruptions in December, as they felt that negatively impacting people's daily lives was not effectively garnering support for their cause. However, their recent resurgence in causing disruptions at events like the U.S. Open indicates a change in their approach.