An environmental protest brought the U.S. Open women’s semifinal match between American Coco Gauff and Czech player Karolína Muchová to a halt Thursday night, one game into the second set.

With Gauff leading 6-4 1-0, several people started shouting from the top section of Arthur Ashe Stadium, the largest tennis stadium in the world. The players eventually left the court and returned to the locker room as the protest continued.

According to tournament officials, three demonstrators disrupted the match. Two of them left quietly when security arrived but one of the protesters —who could be seen on social media posts wearing a shirt that said “end fossil fuels”— glued his feet to the floor of the stadium. Police were eventually called in and helped remove the final protester. 

2023 US Open - Day 11
Members of the New York Police Department step in to help with protesters during the Women’s Singles Semifinal match between Coco Gauff of the United States and Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic.

Getty Images


The match resumed after a nearly 50-minute delay. It was not immediately clear what, if any, charges the protesters could face.