Well-known tennis lover HRH The Duchess of Cambridge made her first appearance this year at Wimbledon. H/T to Gert’s Royals on Twitter who correctly guessed that Kate would turn up today when it wasn’t listed that the Duchess of Gloucester, president of the Lawn Tennis Association, would attend the LTA awards this afternoon.
Before we get into the tennis I want to quickly pivot over to the Duke of Cambridge. Yesterday was the birthday of his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, an event that often draws a small crowd to the gates of Kensington Palace where people lay gifts and mementos to honor her memory. This happens around major occasions in Diana’s life, but particularly the anniversaries of her birth and death, and yesterday was no different. This year, however, William actually came out to the gates and greeted a few of the well-wishers, thanking them for remembering his mother.
The crowd held a small vigil for the late princess that began at 5:30 pm GMT, and at 6:45 pm GMT, William came outside and joined them with a small security detail. He told the visitors he was aware they’d been visiting for years and appeared to recognize a few of them. He then shook their hands, admired the gifts they left, thanked them, and told them he was touched by the gesture. He spent around seven minutes with the group, but decamped when crowds began to gather, saying that it was a private visit.
This isn’t the first time William has interacted with his mother’s well-wishers – in August 2017, for the 20th anniversary of her death, he and the Duke of Sussex also came out to greet visitors and help them lay mementos at KP’s gates. It’s a remarkably kind gesture, and a poignant story to read in the midst of so much other negativity in the royal space these days.
Back to today, Kate came to Wimbledon early and watched the British Harriet Dart play the American Christina McHale, sitting between two British tennis players, Katie Boulter and Anne Keothavong. I’m going to be honest, when I first saw the photos before coffee this morning, I thought Boulter was Chelsy Davy for a moment, and I thought, hmm, well, that’s quite a twist, but no.
She then took her place in the royal box at Centre Court to watch matches that will include Middleton family friend Roger Federer and the Duchess of Sussex’s close friend (and obviously renowned tennis champ) Serena Williams take the court.
Her ensemble today is a white shirtdress by Suzannah, a brand she’s worn a handful of times before, though it’s been a while. The black belt with it is Alexander McQueen, which we first saw in Paris. I’m a fan of this look, which is both summery and on-brand for Kate. Everything about it feels very on point for a Brit watching tennis, so I’m all for it…much more so than I was about last year’s debut look that looked like it actually featured a tennis ball-esque print.
Kate is also showing up a lot earlier in the Wimbledon schedule than she did last year, which may mean we get more than two appearances this year, but that remains TBD. I’ll update this post as the day goes on, but in the meantime, the best part of Wimbledon for royal watchers is Kate’s facial expressions, so here you go 😉
(Also, it’s worth mentioning, Kate’s hair was on point today.)