Fire On The Court In Casablanca
The unique drying method took place during a Friday rain delay at the Challenger
Move over, squeegees: The ATP Challenger Tour event in Casablanca took a more extreme approach in drying Court Central on Friday by setting part of the court on fire.
The blaze took place during a delay in the semi-final match between sixth seed Arthur De Greef of Belgium and qualifier Maxime Janvier of France, with Janvier leading 6-4 4-2. But while lighting a court on fire to address standing water might be an uncommon practice, it isn’t unheard of.
“We had a long rain break and the side of the court was still holding a lot of water in the surface. To solve this, you pour gas on it and set it alight,” said ATP Challenger Tour supervisor Carl Baldwin. "This isn’t commonly done, but I have seen it before.”
Janvier returned to the court and found that his groundstrokes were still on fire, allowing him to hold onto the lead and move into his first ATP Challenger Tour final. The 19-year-old Frenchman will square off for the championship on Saturday against fellow teenager and World No. 1 junior Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, who is also seeking his first Challenger title.
This is how they dry the courts in Morocco! pic.twitter.com/y5DdseOcpd— Stefanos Tsitsipas (@StefTsitsipas) October 15, 2016