Mark Allen blasts Just Stop Oil protestors for disrupting World Snooker Championship

Northern Ireland snooker player Mark Allen blasted Just Stop Oil protesters 'complete idiots' after they interrupted his World Snooker Championship match with Fan Zhengyi on Monday.

He said he felt there were "better ways" to make their protest.

It happened just after a protester poured orange dye onto the table being used in the game between Robert Milkins and Joe Perry forcing play to be suspended for roughly 40 minutes.

A man and a woman were arrested.

World number three Allen is a contender to win his first world title in 2023, having already won three other titles this season.

However, his opening match was disrupted when two protestors entered the Crucible arena in Sheffield.

One of them poured orange dye onto the table being used in the game between Robert Milkins and Joe Perry, forcing it to be stopped for around 45 minutes as cleaners brought vacuum cleaners into the arena. Master of ceremonies Rob Walker was among those helping to sweep up the mess.

A second protester was just stopped from disrupting the match between Allen and Zhengyi on table two by referee Olivier Marteel.

Yorkshire Police say they have arrested a 30-year-old man and a 52-year-old woman on suspicion of criminal damage.

Mark Allen did not take too kindly to the disruption: "I think I was the last person in the whole arena to work out what was going on because I was focused on the shot I was about to play. "I heard a bang, that I thought it was on the other table and then I turned round and there was a woman on my table. "It could have been a lot worse - you saw what happened on the other table and how much disruption it caused. "It was a surreal moment but I feel like even talking about it is giving them airtime they don't deserve because they are just idiots.

"What are they trying to gain from what they have done? I am sure there are better ways to get their point across."

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