Streaker Takes Court at Aussie Open

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

A streaker dashed on court while Venus and Serena Williams played doubles Friday at the Australian Open, prancing around before being arrested.

The Williams sisters were working on a 6-3, 6-3 victory over
Japan's Ayumi Morita and Germany's Martina Muller when the man,
wearing only a shirt, sprinted across the sidelines and made
several dance moves before heading toward an exit.

He was met by security guards as he left, arrested and banned
for the event. He was not immediately identified. Australian Open
officials said the streaker was on the court for 14 seconds.

"The focus of the on-court security team is always on player
protection," a statement from tournament officials said. "They
are instructed not to chase offenders as their focus at all times
must remain on the players. The on-court actions of the security
personnel reflected this focus on player protection."

The incident added to a busy day for police at the Grand Slam
event, with a near-riot breaking out between Serbian and Bosnian
fans after Serbia's Novak Djokovic, the defending champion, beat
Bosnian-born American Amer Delic.

Two men were arrested for their roles in the chair-throwing
melee. One woman was knocked over and dazed after being hit in the
head by a chair. About 30 people were ejected from Melbourne Park.

In 2006, Wimbledon officials said they were considering the
installation of security screens or fences around Center Court
after two security breaches.

During Roger Federer's quarterfinal win over Mario Ancic, two
men came on the court with rackets and balls, and one of them hit a
shot. A day earlier, a streaker interrupted a quarterfinal match
and danced and cartwheeled only 10 feet from Maria Sharapova.

Security at tournaments was increased after former No. 1 Monica
Seles was stabbed in 1993 by a man who ran on court during a match
in Hamburg, Germany.


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