(MENAFN) In a surprising turn of events during the Cricket World Cup final between India and Australia, a pro-Palestine protester made headlines by invading the pitch and attempting to embrace Indian batsman Virat Kohli. The Australian, identified as Wen Johnson, wore a T-shirt displaying the slogan "stop bombing Palestine" and a mask featuring the Palestinian flag.
The incident unfolded at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, where a crowd of 130,000 spectators had gathered for the high-profile match. Despite the presence of approximately 6,000 police officers at the stadium, Johnson managed to breach security, crossing a fence and running towards Kohli while displaying his pro-Palestine message.
Kohli appeared visibly startled by the intrusion, prompting security personnel to swiftly remove Johnson from the pitch. The 24-year-old Australian now faces charges of criminal trespassing and voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servants from their duty.
In his statements to Australian media, Johnson expressed his support for Palestine, referencing the ongoing conflict in the Gaza Strip. Israel has been conducting airstrikes in response to an attack by Hamas on October 7, resulting in a significant loss of life and heightened tensions in the region.
Notably, Johnson has a history of disrupting sporting events as a TikTok prankster. He previously breached security at the Fifa Women's World Cup final in Sydney in August, where he invaded the pitch wearing a "free Ukraine" T-shirt, causing a 20-minute delay to the match.
The incident at the Cricket World Cup final raises questions about stadium security and the challenges posed by individuals seeking to use high-profile events as platforms for their messages. As authorities address the legal consequences for Johnson's actions, the incident underscores the need for enhanced security measures to ensure the safety and integrity of major sporting events.
MENAFN provides the information “as is” without warranty of any kind. We do not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, images, videos, licenses, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained in this article. If you have any complaints or copyright issues related to this article, kindly contact the provider above.