Tennis

Man with flare interrupts French final

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A masked man ran out of the stands and onto the court during the second set of Sunday's French Open men's final, managing to ignite a flare within a few feet of Rafael Nadal.

The incident occurred in the seventh game of the second set with Nadal serving for the set up 5-1 against David Ferrer. The man was quickly wrangled and led off court by security, but he was all too close to the now eight-time French Open champion:

Another guard stood near Nadal, protecting him while the protester was subdued, as you can see above. Nadal later shook the bodyguard's hand before resuming play.

Here's a GIF of the incident (h/t NESN):

Here you can see the man as he first jumped on the court. Certainly an unnerving sight:

(Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

According to reports, the protesters were anti-gay marriage. In a closer-up shot of the man who ran on the court, you can see the words "KIDS RIGHT" written on his stomach:

(Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

Here is the man being thrown off the playing surface:

(Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

The ignited flare was placed on the ground just off court and could still be seen blazing in the background as Nadal prepared to serve following the disturbance.

About 10 minutes earlier, demonstrating fans in the upper deck of Court Philippe Chatrier also briefly delayed the match.

Other protesters also brandishing red flares climbed to the top of the adjacent Court Suzanne Lenglen and unfurled a banner calling for the resignation of French President Francois Hollande:

(Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images)

Christophe Fagniez, the tournament's director of operations, later said: ''The situation is under control, it's in the hands of the police.''

Nadal went on to beat Ferrer 6-3, 6-2, 6-3, becoming the first man to win eight titles at the same Grand Slam event.

A male streaker wearing nothing but tennis balls and sneakers ran onto the center court and hurdled the net during the 2003 final where Juan Carlos Ferrero beat Martin Verkerk.

In the 2009 final won by Roger Federer, a man jumped over the photographer's pit and ran on the court, went up to the Swiss player and tried to put a red hat on him. Federer brushed the man aside before security guards got close enough to intervene. After hopping the net, the man was tackled and jailed for questioning.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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