Friday, 24 September 2021

UPDATED: The Duchess Takes to the Court with US Open Champions

Good afternoon, dear readers! The Duchess of Cambridge was out and about today -- and as you can see from the photo below, having a smashing time :)

The Duchess was delighted to meet and congratulate US Open champions, including Emma Raducanu, in her role as patron of the Lawn Tennis Association at a special homecoming event.

It was hosted by the LTA Youth Centre at the National Tennis Centre.

Emma's journey this year has been both transformative for her and British women's tennis. Born in Toronto and raised in London, Ms Raducanu began playing tennis aged five. As an 18-year-old, Emma's focus this year was very much on her A levels -- she couldn't have anticipated all 2021 had in store for her in many ways. In an amazing feat as a wildcard ranked outside the top 300, she reached the fourth round of Wimbledon in her first major tournament. At the end of her final match, Emma required medical advice after feeling dizzy and suffering breathing problems. Speaking about the experience, she wrote: "The medical team advised me not to continue and, although it felt like the hardest thing in the world not to be able to finish my Wimbledon on the court, I was not well enough to carry on."

In the days and weeks that followed Wimbledon, Emma was subjected to a barrage of attacks both in the media and on social media. It was deeply concerning to witness a situation in which an 18-year-old rising star, who had had a fantastic tournament exceeding all expectations, was been sent a very damaging message -- the tone of some of the commentary highlighting just how far we have to go in terms of mental health awareness. I personally thought it took a great deal of strength for Emma to follow medical advice and place her health and wellbeing first, making her a strong role model for girls. Emma showed outstanding resilience, dignity and calm, weathering the storm with support from her family, friends and iconic figures, including British tennis legends Andy Murray and Tim Henman.

Then the US Open came... To say Emma completed a performance for the history books would be something of an understatement. She powered through every match before ultimately winning against another talented young star in Leylah Fernandez of Canada. People up and down the country were cheering Emma on that night, including the Duchess of Cambridge, who personally tweeted afterwards: "Huge congratulations Emma Raducanu on your stunning performances and historic Grand Slam victory! Incredible –we are all so proud of you. And Leylah Fernandez well done on your amazing achievements at this year’s #USOpen, it’s been a pleasure to watch."

On the win, which made her the first British woman to win a grand slam singles title since Virginia Wade in 1977, she said, "I’ve always dreamed of winning a grand slam. You say, ‘I want to win a grand slam’, but to have the belief I did, and actually executing, winning a grand slam, I can’t believe it. I first started when I was a little girl but I think the biggest thing that you have visions of, for me it was just winning, the winning moment, and going to celebrate with your team in the box. That’s been playing in my head a couple of nights. I’ve fallen asleep to that." Below, highlights from an unforgettable final.

The Duchess was excited to join Emma on court.

Emma told ITV: "I'm very, very impressed with the Duchess of Cambridge’s tennis." Adding "her forehand is incredible -- it was a lot of fun to play tennis with the Duchess". Reporters present said Kate played incredibly well. The entire Middleton family have a similar enthusiastic interest in tennis, with Kate once revealing Roger Federer was her mother's secret crush. Kate is also a keen amateur player, and the Cambridges have a tennis court at their country home, Anmer Hall, where they enjoy a spot of friendly competition.

The Duchess also had the opportunity to congratulate other British tennis stars, including Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid -- who achieved the calendar year Grand Slam this year in men's wheelchair doubles, and Joe Salisbury -- winner of this year's US Open men's doubles, partnering American Rajeev Ram. 

The Mirror reports:

'When she entered the room the meet the group, she went to offer her hand before but quickly drew it away remembering she wasn't allowed to.

She said: "Are we shaking hands? I don't want to break your training bubbles.

"It's really awkward, you don't know quite whether to do it. It is the same with face masks, whether to put them on or whether to take them off.

"You never know whether to hug people, congratulate them or shake hands."

The Telegraph reports:

'The Duchess personally congratulated teenage tennis sensation Emma Raducanu on her US Open triumph, as the queen of tennis and future Queen prepare for a spot of doubles. 

The Duchess told Raducanu and her fellow British tennis stars they were "amazing", saying: "Guys, honestly, congratulations!"

Calling them "seriously impressive", she said: "It's so nice for all of you to be back here in your home country so we can celebrate you in the home of British tennis." 

Kate and Joe on the court.

Kensington Palace said: "Her Royal Highness is passionate about supporting grassroots tennis and encouraging young people from all backgrounds to become involved in the sport. LTA Youth is an innovative programme aimed at inspiring the next generation of players aged 4-18. The programme aims to help more children enjoy the benefits of playing and staying in tennis, whatever their age, gender, ability, disability or background."

A group photo with the champs - a very exciting time for British tennis!

Emma spoke to the media about meeting Kate: "I think she's an inspiration to the whole country, the way she handles herself is extremely inspirational and I think I can learn a lot from her."

Kate was kitted out in Poivre Blanc -- a French sportswear brand for the whole family, created in 1984.

The eagle-eyed Mallory quickly identified Kate's Oxford blue ladies tennis jacket. The piece is described as: "Produced by exclusive French tennis wear company, Poivre Blanc, this jacket is both flattering, comfortable and yet a technical piece of performance clothing. A smart shade of very dark Blue with 2 ways zip at centre front, allowing increased space, and movement at waist/hips if required."

The deep blue ladies skirt features inverted front pleats showing contrasting white detail. Inside built-in compression pant, and a pocket for the ball.

And underneath, the Poivre Blanc ladies polo (with thanks to Laura).

Lady Parky idenitified Kate's trainers as the £130 Roger Advantage style by On Running (co-created with the prince of tennis Roger Federer). 

Kate's sneakers are white/juniper. They are available at Zappos (with Free Shipping) and come in several colours at Nordstrom

Made from recycled content, the sneakers are assembled in Zucca, Vietnam as part of the collaborations sustainability initiative. A look at Roger modelling the style? I think so...

UPDATE: The Duchess tweeted a personal message tonight in tribute to Sabina Nessa. Sabina was killed near her home -- a dreadful tragedy for her family, friends and the community in Kidbrooke. It has drawn parallels with the murder of Sarah Everard (for whom Kate attended a vigil privately), and tonight a vigil will be held for Sabina.

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London said: "The vigil for Sabina Nessa tonight is an important and emotional moment for the whole community to come together and remember Sabina’s life, and to stand in solidarity with her family and loved ones during this time of unimaginable grief. Sabina’s family, friends and colleagues have shared powerful tributes to her life. It’s clear that she was a bright, kind and caring young woman, who had a powerful impact on those around her. What happened to Sabina is every parent’s nightmare and every woman’s worst fear. Her death is a tragedy and I stand with the community in Kidbrooke and Londoners across our city, united in grief and united in our determination that justice is done."


  1. "The deep blue ladies skirt features inverted front pleats showing contrasting white detail. Inside built-in compression pant, and a pocket for the ball."

    Wait... women's clothes with POCKETS?!?

    Is that allowed? :)

    1. Hi Bea ! I wish more designers added good deep pockets in all garments for women. For Tennis and Pickleball, yes, pockets are designed in to hold the balls . Most attire for court sports have pockets. Only the pros get people to help them fetch the balls.

  2. From Emma on the news. The second person this week that says this publicly.

    “The Duchess of Cambridge is an extremely great role model and I think she’s an inspiration to the whole country”

  3. wow the duchess has all ita element today I'm really sure she enjoy it and Emma she leaving the dream meeting and playing with the duchess. Lovely sighting

  4. I am really seeing how Kate's interests and events she is showcasing are all weaving together as a royal with influence.

    Photography (enjoyment of people and the outdoors), garden projects, spending family time outside, physical activity and mental health. I would guess, participating in a hobby, enjoying the outdoors and being active may have a positive effect on mental health.

    Kate is a good role model for a healthy and active lifestyle. Sporty Kate is impressive and she has great style at the same time.

    1. Well said, G.A! πŸŽΎπŸŒΏπŸ“·❤️

  5. What a fun day and great way to promote the program! Everyone looked to have a wonderful time. As a tennis player I loved Catherine's tennis attire, very cute. Ali

  6. I absolutely love this!!! ♥️♥️♥️♥️

    1. An emphatic Ditto FloridaGirl!

  7. As an athlete I love that Kate leans into these fitness events. I think that’s great to show that you can still stay fit and active into adulthood after having children. Love the outfit and thinks she looks great. She’s over twice Emma’s age and can hold her own! Sue

  8. I love seeing the DoC at events where she has activities , she seems more comfortable at them.

  9. Tammy from California24 September 2021 at 16:58

    So many Kate outings this week WOO-HOO! We have never seen her in something so short, a surprise first for the DOC. She wore it well and looked very much in her element at this event.

    I don't follow news very much (it is always bad), so I didn't hear how the media bashed Emma. They are vicious vultures. I guess she silenced them huh? Emma is absolutely darling.

  10. She looks fantastic. What a nice event.

  11. I have always wanted to learn to play tennis and one of the reasons is the cute outfits they wear! Kate confirmed this today in her cute outfit!! I thought it was nice of Kate to wear the same style of skirt that Emma was wearing when she won the US Open!

  12. Tennis is such a great sport but definitely something that requires some funds and courts. If the agency LTA Youth can help with that, terrific!

  13. I love it! Hard to believe that she isn't 25 years old here. She glows!

  14. Looking good Dss Kate. What can she not do? it is always nice to watch her interacting with the people, it is honest and fun. Keep up the good work.

  15. i wonder if Kate has a replica of her engagement ring for sporting days like this and earlier this week when she was abseiling? Today must have been such a fun day for her as well as the tennis champions! I am so happy she is back from summer break.

  16. This tennis outfit is supercute and I love this engagement. You have a feeling this is something Kate really wanted to do, rather than something she was told to do.

    1. She seems to be very happy to be there and I am sure she is. But I don't remember an engagement where she seemed to go there because she was made to. She manages to be enthusiastic at a lot of things. She certainly is very fit and good at sports.

  17. Any info on Emma's outfit and shoes? It looks to be all Nike, but not sure how to narrow it down or pinpoint where to find everything.

    1. Hello,

      I believe Emma wore these shorts, the top doesn't appear to be available.

  18. It’s work after all. Sometime it’s things you enjoy doing and other times, not so much. Ivy Lin is merely being realistic.
    -All good:)


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