World Snooker Championship descends into chaos as Just Stop Oil protester storms table
By Mark White
Published: 17/04/2023- 19:52
Updated: 18/04/2023- 10:00
Officials at the World Snooker Championship in Sheffield have been forced to halt the event this evening after protesters disrupted the competition and ripped open orange powder on one of the tables.
The event unfolded live on BBC as two games were underway on the third day of competition at the Crucible theatre.
At least two protesters were wrestled away from the main arena as the incident unfolded.
Officials are now determining what the powder contained and whether it can be cleaned up in time to allow competition to resume this evening.
The protester jumped onto the table shortly after the event began
He covered the match table with an orange powder
Robert Milkins and Joe Perry were playing their first-round match at the time the male protester ran out of the spectator seats and jumped on top of the table.
The protester wearing a Just Stop Oil tee-shirt ripped open a packet and tipped orange powder all over the table.
Northern Ireland's Mark Allen and China's Fan Zhengyi were also playing on a second table at the time.
Referee Olivier Marteel helped prevent a female protester from getting on the table and they were removed from the auditorium by security staff.
Play had to be suspended while officials dealt with the mess
Play resumed in the Allen versus Fan match after a 40-minute delay.
A decision on the second game is still awaited.
Master of ceremonies Rob Walker was seen hoovering the table in a bid to get play back under way..
Speaking on the BBC, former world champion Stephen Hendry said: "I have never seen that before at a snooker event. It's a first."