The Royal Family

Princess Kate Cheers On England At Rugby World Cup

England’s rugby team had a strong supporter in the stands for their quarterfinal match against Fiji: their royal patron, Kate Middleton!

The Princess of Wales, 41, traveled to the Stade de Marseille in France to support the English squad in the Rugby World Cup as the team faced Fiji on Sunday.

Queen Elizabeth named Kate as patron of England’s Rugby Football Union and Rugby Football League in February 2022. It was the first redistributed position previously held by Prince Harry, who stepped back from his working royal role with his wife, Meghan Markle, in 2020.

Princess Kate previously attended the rugby tournament to support England last month, appearing at a group-stage game against Argentina. Her trip to France was a success, as England won the match 27-10. The outing also provided the debut of her new haircut for fall including a big change: curtain bangs!

Kate’s appearance at the rugby game came one day after her husband Prince William stepped out in France to watch Wales compete against Argentina in the quarterfinals.

The separate games are no surprise as the Prince and Princess of Wales have a rugby rivalry in their household. While Kate is patron of the union and league that governs the game in England, Prince William, also 41, has been the patron of the Welsh Rugby Union since 2016. It’s a well-suited fit, as King Charles named his eldest son the Prince of Wales (the traditional title for the male heir to the throne) on Sept. 9, 2022, in his first speech as King after Queen Elizabeth’s death.

The ongoing rugby rivalry isn’t the first time that William and Kate have shown off their competitive sides. The couple never shies away from a face-off, whether they’re making cocktails, sailing in a charity race or playing ping-pong.

READ: Prince William And Kate Engage In A Competitive Blindfolded Challenge

Just this week, the royals showed off their competitive sides at a mental fitness workshop organized by the charity SportsAid, where they tried their hand at sports such as netball and goalball.

Goalball is a Paralympic sport for the visually impaired where all the players wear eyeshades or blindfolds. Tactile lines are used for players to feel where they are and the ball has an internal bell allowing the players to hear where it is.

Both Prince William and Princess Kate sported goggles to participate in a penalty shout-out.

Tim Lawler, the chief executive of SportsAid, exclusively tells PEOPLE, “The prince shot and the goalie saved it, but the princess took a shot and she scored, so bragging rights to the princess!”

The couple recently joked about their competitive nature during an appearance on The Good, The Bad & The Rugby podcast (which is co-hosted by Mike Tindall, a former England rugby star who is married to William’s cousin Zara).

“I’m not going to say you’re uber competitive,” Mike said about Kate before pausing to give a nod indicating that she really was.

Princess Kate replied coyly, “I’m not competitive at all.”

“I’ve seen her play beer pong!” Mike said.

When it comes to table tennis, Kate said on the podcast that she and her husband have never “actually managed to finish a game.”

“It becomes a mental challenge between the two of us,” she said.

William added that it comes down to “who can out-mental each other.”


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