French Open news: Environmental activist explains why she disrupted play in semi finals

Lucy Roberts
We have 1028 days left

During the semi final match between finalist Casper Ruud and Marin Cilic, an environmental activist ran onto court during the third set and attempted to disrupt play.

The 22-year-old, called Alizee who was wearing a t-shirt which said “we have 1028 days left,” ran onto court, tied herself to the net and knelt down on the surface before she was removed by security staff.

It’s been revealed the woman is a member of the French activist group Derniere Renovation, who released a statement after the incident.

“22-year-old Alizee 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,” the statement said.

“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.

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

Ruud, who was playing at the time of the interruption, said he was scared at the time because he had no idea what was going on.

“I was a bit scared honestly, I didn’t really know what was going on. When it comes to this protest, it was a little bit, what should I say, nasty is maybe a good word,” the 23-year-old Norwegian said.

“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, it 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.

Ruud went on to win the match and will face Rafael Nadal later today in the final at the French Open.