Spain’s clash with Croatia in the Davis Cup final was halted on Wednesday when two protesters stormed the pitch and had to be stopped. Borna Coric had just beaten Roberto Bautista Agut in the first match of the quarterfinal tie in Malaga when a man and a woman invaded the pitch.
The two protesters reportedly attempted to tie themselves to the net. Security guards immediately sprang into action and dragged them off the pitch.
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Five security members accosted the man and woman and prevented them from going ahead with their protest, while stunned onlookers looked on in amazement. The two members of the crowd were handcuffed and led away.
Despite the officials’ quick actions, many wondered about the level of security at the event. Some took to social media to question how the couple was able to run onto the court with such ease.
It was the third case of protesters gaining access to the court at a major tennis event this year. similar incidents It happened at the Australian Open. in January and Laver Cup in September.
There were disturbing scenes at the Laver Cup in London when a spectator ran onto the pitch and set the playing surface on fire. However, he too seemed to inadvertently catch fire to his arm, screaming in shock before dousing the flames.
Australia will face Croatia in the Davis Cup semi-finals
Two-time champions Croatia reached the semifinal of the tournament for the sixth time with a 2-0 win over hosts Spain, taking advantage of the absence of Rafa Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz. Croatia will now face Australia in the semi-finals.
Marin Cilic rallied to secure the winning point for Croatia with a 5-7, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) victory over Pablo Carreno Busta. Coric had given his team the lead with a 6-4, 7-6 (7-4) win over Bautista Agut.
With Carreno Busta up 5-4 in the third set tiebreaker and two points from forcing a decisive double, Cilic fired an ace to tie it and then coolly sealed victory in three hours and 13 minutes. Croatia, who finished runners-up to Russia in last year’s Davis Cup final, will now play Australia on Friday in Malaga (2am Saturday AEDT).
On Tuesday, Jordan Thompson and Alex de Minaur produced return victories to give Australia a 2–0 win over the Netherlands to secure their place in the last four for the first time in five years.
“It was an incredible battle,” Cilic said on Wednesday. However, he admitted that the absence of US Open champion Alcaraz and 22-time Grand Slam champion Nadal played into Croatia’s favor, which had lost its three previous Davis Cup meetings with Spain.
“It would be very different. Rafa has been a team leader throughout his career. He is one of the best Davis Cup players of all time,” added Cilic. “Carlos, a fantastic season for him. A pity that he was injured.”
The captain of Spain, Sergi Bruguera, regretted the departure of his team. “I think luck played a bit, and Cilic had a bit more today,” he insisted.
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