- During this year’s British Open Championship, weather protesters briefly disrupted play by throwing an orange substance onto the 17th green.
- American golfer Billy Horschel assisted the putting green marshal in removing one of the protesters from the green.
- Bill Horschel, Alex Noren and Corey Conners made par on the hole, despite the interruption.
Environmental activists briefly disrupted play at the British Open on Friday by throwing an orange substance onto the side of the 17th green at Royal Liverpool, prompting American player Billy Horschel to intervene.
Police and security guards quickly took action to prevent the Just Stop Oil protesters from causing further disruption during the second round. Play resumed shortly after the protesters were removed.
Horschel was playing the hole at the time and helped a green bailiff move one of the protesters away. The other players at 17 were Corey Conners and Alex Noren. They were marking their balls and preparing to hit their second shots when the interruption began. All three players made par on the hole.
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Organizers cleaned up the affected area before the next group teeed off.
The protesters, wearing white shirts emblazoned with the words «Just Stop the Oil», had entered from each side of the raised green which meets the Irish Sea in the background. One of them had a flare, police said.
Two protesters were immediately led off the green, while two others were later escorted separately.
Local police said in a statement that two men and two women were detained «on suspicion of conspiracy to commit criminal damage and disorderly conduct.»
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Just Stop Oil is an organization that wants the British government to stop new oil, gas and coal projects. It has disrupted a number of major sporting events in Britain in recent months, including Wimbledon, an Ashes cricket test and the world snooker championship.
British Open organizers said ahead of the tournament that they were aware of the possibility of protesters attempting to disrupt the Open, but had «significant security procedures in place». He had advised the players not to get involved.
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The 17th hole garnered most of the attention before the Open after being redesigned to add drama to the tournament. It is only 136 yards, but its raised green challenges players with steep slopes and deep bunkers.
The British Open started on Thursday and is scheduled to finish on Sunday.