A climate change activist lit himself on fire during a match at the Laver Cup on Friday during a match between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Diego Schwartzman.
The activist, wearing a T-shirt that read “END UK PRIVATE JETS” dashed onto the court during Stefanos Tsitsipas’ 6-2, 6-1 win over Diego Schwartzman.
He then sat down, poured lighter fluid on his arm and onto the court and then set himself and a part of the court ablaze.
After lighting himself on fire the protestor howled in agony. Attendants then put the fire out and forcibly removed the protestor from the court.
— The informant (@theinformantofc) September 23, 2022
A Twitter account created in July of this year called End UK Private Jets has taken credit for the protest. They posted on Twitter, “Kai, 20, set their arm on fire at Laver Cup.”
The account added, “The liveable climate of our planet is collapsing. No one is taking it seriously. Is humanity not worth saving? Let’s get into resistance against this death machine.”
Insider reports that Tsitsipas commented on the protest following the match telling reporters, “He came out of nowhere. I’ve never had an incident happen like this on court. I hope he’s alright.”
While the protestor is grabbing headlines for lighting himself on fire, Tsitsipas hit one of the most gorgeous shots you will see against Schwartzman that even got a standing ovation from Novak Djokovic, who was watching the match courtside.
The Laver Cup is not your usual tennis tournament as described on their website it pits Europe vs. The World. “Each team is comprised of six players, and led by a team captain, who is a legend of the sport. The captain of Europe is Bjorn Borg, and the captain of Team World is John McEnroe.”
“Three of the six players qualify based on their ATP singles ranking as of the Monday following the French Open. Three are ‘captain’s picks’, announced by the start of the US Open,” the Laver Cup website explains.
Team Europe consists of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Casper Ruud, Roger Federer, and Andy Murray. Matteo Berrettini is an alternate.
Team World includes Felix Auger-Aliassime, Taylor Fritz, Diego Schwartzman, Alex De Minaur, Frances Tiafoe, and Jack Sock. Tommy Paul is an alternate.
The two teams compete against each other in singles and doubles matches until the winning team reaches 13 points. Both singles and doubles matches are best of three sets. Each player must compete in at least one singles match during the first two days and they can’t play singles more than twice during the three days.
Four of the six players must also play doubles. The doubles combinations are not to be reused unless for the Decider on Day 3 and if points are tied 12 to 12.
Tsitsipas’ defeat of Schwartzman put Team Europe up 2-0. Casper Ruud gave them their first point when he defeated Jack Sock 6-4, 5-7, and 10-7.
What do you make of this protestor’s actions?