| September 23, 2022, 1:20 PMSeptember 23, 2022, 1:20 PM
LONDON (AP) — A protester lit the court docket and his arm on hearth throughout a match on the Laver Cup tennis occasion Friday, hours earlier than Roger Federer was scheduled to play for the ultimate time earlier than retiring.

The episode briefly delayed the motion in the beginning of the second set of Stefanos Tsitsipas’ 6-2, 6-1 victory for Crew Europe over Diego Schwartzman of Crew World on the O2 Area.

The activist, carrying a lighter and sporting a white T-shirt with a message about non-public jets, made his means onto the black court docket and sat down close to the web. The individual finally was carried away by safety guards.

“It got here out of nowhere. … I by no means had an incident like this occur on court docket,” Tsitsipas, the runner-up on the 2021 French Open, mentioned afterward. “I hope he is all proper.”

Tsitsipas spoke to the chair umpire to verify it might be protected to proceed to play and requested {that a} mark left on the court docket be cleaned up.

Federer, a 20-time Grand Slam champion, was slated to compete hours later Friday, teaming up with longtime rival Rafael Nadal in a doubles match.

The 41-year-old Federer hasn’t performed an official match since Wimbledon in July 2021 and is ending his taking part in profession after a sequence of operations on his proper knee.

There have been different cases of high-profile tennis matches being interrupted lately, together with throughout the 2009 closing at Roland Roland Garros, when a person went as much as Federer and tried to place a hat on his head.

At this yr’s French Open, in June, a protester sporting a T-shirt with the message “We now have 1028 days left” interrupted the lads’s semifinal between Casper Ruud and 2014 U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic by attaching herself to the web with metallic wires and glue and kneeling on the court docket.

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