‘Thousands of Them’ – Massive Swarm of Bees Ruins Bill Gates’ Time at Tennis Match, Forces Suspension

‘Thousands of Them’ – Massive Swarm of Bees Ruins Bill Gates’ Time at Tennis Match, Forces Suspension

A tennis match at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California, featuring Carlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev and watched by former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates, was halted Thursday when a swarm of bees invaded the court.

Gates, a guest of tournament owner and fellow billionaire Larry Ellison, was watching the match from Ellison’s box, the New York Post reported.

Alcaraz and Zverev were tied 1-1 in the first set of the quarterfinal of the tournament when the bees began swarming.

As Alcaraz prepared to serve, he was overwhelmed by the insects.

His agent, Albert Molina, said during a news conference that Alcaraz was stung on the forehead by a bee during the attack.

The Spaniard was forced to run off the court to avoid being stung further.

“There are thousands of them!” one of the Sky Sports commentators said.

“One of the more bizarre suspensions of play.”

The bees even went into the crowd of spectators. “Everyone is taking cover,” the commentator said.

Even the “bird cam” — which provides a bird’s-eye view of matches — was covered with bees.

As the camera was lifted away from the court, there was hope that it would take a large portion of the bees along with it.

“We’re hopefully going to escort all these bees out with our bird cam,” a commentator said.

The trick seemed to work as what looked like hundreds of bees attached themselves to the bottom of the camera, and others followed it, leading them away from the court.

“I’m not sure what’s more impressive: all of them hiding out there or the shock that we’ve got,” the commentator said.

The incident drew attention from people all over the world.

“I have never seen anything like it in my 39 years of tennis,” tennis legend Boris Becker said on social media.

After a delay of one hour and 48 minutes, the match resumed, with Alcaraz defeating Zverev in straight sets, 6-3 and 6-1, in just 1:29.

While the bee invasion at Indian Wells was a rare event, it’s not the first time danger has struck during live broadcast tennis tournaments.

In December, a deadly eastern brown snake interrupted Australian player Dominic Thiem’s match against fellow Aussie James McCabe at the Brisbane International.

In January, a nifty little cricket interrupted a match between Emma Raducanu and Shelby Rogers in the first round of the Australian Open.

A ball girl struggled to catch the cricket but, with help, was finally able to get the critter off the court so the match could resume.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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