Who is Wen Johnson, the Australian wearing ‘Free Palestine’ t-shirt who invaded pitch during World Cup final?

The Ahmedabad police on Sunday registered a case against the man who breached security and hugged Virat Kohli during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 final between India and Australia at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.

The person, identified as Wen Johnson, was supporting Palestine which has been under attack by Israel since October 7 when Hamas launched a surprise assault on southern Israel.

“The accused described himself as a big fan of Virat Kohli and had come to watch the match and being a fan of Kohli, he crossed the railing and went into the ground,” Ahmedabad Police said.

Police said the case has been registered against the accused under sections 332, and 447 of the IPC for unauthorized entry into the stadium of the Gujarat Cricket Association, ANI reported.

Who is Wen Johnson?

1) Speaking to media persons, the pitch intruder who breached the security and entered the field during the India vs Australia final match said, “My name is John…I am from Australia. I entered (the field) to meet Virat Kohli. I support Palestine…”

2) He was a Palestinian supporter and wearing a T-shirt with a Free Palestine slogan and a mask with a Palestinian flag color theme as he invaded the field during the ongoing final match.

3) “I have a meme disorder that causes me to think about memes 20 hours a day. I spend 90% of my life reading memes. MEMES MEMES MEMES and more MEMES!! I have an extremely boring life and is anti-social,” another account called ‘gofundme’ read about Wen as quoted by TimesNow. 

4) Sources told The Indian Express that Johnson was a TikTok prankster and “has a history of intruding on matches”. He is also said to be a big fan of Kohli.

5) This is not the first instance Wen has entered the pitch after breaching security. He also disturbed the FIFA Women’s World Cup final this year, according to media reports. 

6) An Instagram profile named ‘Pyjamamann’ shows that the pitch invader has been protesting across the world for various reasons. During the FIFA Women’s World Cup final, he was seen wearing a “Free Ukraine” t-shirt while invading the pitch due to which the match was delayed for about 20 minutes.

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Updated: 20 Nov 2023, 07:43 AM IST

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