Tennis-Bee invasion forces Alcaraz v Zverev match to be suspended

By Thomson Reuters Mar 14, 2024 | 8:10 PM

(Reuters) – “Bees stop play” is not an announcement usually heard by professional tennis players but Carlos Alcaraz made a beeline for the exit after thousands of the insects swarmed centre court during his Indian Wells quarter-final against Alexander Zverev on Thursday.

The Spaniard was about to serve at 1-1 in the first set when the pesky insects started circling around the court and after making futile attempts to swat away the bees with his racket, Alcaraz ran for cover into the locker room.

Bemused umpire Mohamed Lahyani informed the crowd “we are having problems with bees” before confirming that play could not continue as the bees had taken over the court.

Thousands of bees could also be seen under one of the aerial cameras over the main court at Indian Wells Tennis Garden, while others smacked into the lenses of the TV cameras.

(This story has been corrected to clarify that the match was a quarter-final in paragraph 1, and to fix a typo in paragraph 2)

(Editing by Ed Osmond)