Climate protesters interrupt Italian Open matches

Two matches at the Italian Open in Rome were suspended following a protest by climate activists.

The last-16 tie between Madison Keys and Sorana Cirstea was interrupted, along with a doubles match in which Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin were facing Marcelo Arevalo and Mate Pavic.

American Keys was leading 6-2 3-1 when, according to a statement on the Italian Open website,, external two activists wearing orange vests ran on to the court and threw confetti.

Others glued themselves to the stand before police and firefighters arrived.

The protestors were taken away before the match resumed and Keys beat Romanian Cirstea 6-2 6-1.

There were similar scenes which caused a temporary stoppage to the doubles match on court 12.

Naomi Osaka lost 6-2 6-3 to China’s Zheng Qinwen in the last 16.

Zheng, the Australian Open runner-up in January, reeled off seven straight games from 2-1 down in the first set.

She completed victory in one hour 24 minutes against Japan’s Osaka, who was making her first appearance at the tournament since 2021.

Zheng will play Coco Gauff or Paula Badosa in the quarter-finals.