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Why Zara and Mike Tindall once shunned the Royal Box at Wimbledon

The couple attended the tennis tournament in 2019

Jenni McKnight

Zara and Mike Tindall surprised royal fans when they attended Wimbledon in 2019, soaking up an afternoon of nail-biting tennis – but not from the Royal Box.

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Instead, the Queen's granddaughter and her husband opted to join a host of sporting stars in the stands on Centre Court to see Novak Djokovic defeat David Goffin and advance to the semi-finals. But why didn't Zara and Mike join other members of the royal family in the best seats in the house?

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One reason could be that they were special guests of watch-makers Rolex. Zara and Mike were sat next to retired Formula One racing driver Nico Rosberg and his wife Viviane Sibold. While sat just behind them was legendary British Formula One racing driver, Sir Jackie Stewart, who was wearing a straw hat with 'Rolex' branded across the top.

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There were also several other guests sat in the vicinity wearing the same 'Rolex' branded hat, which could mean that Zara – who looked gorgeous in a long striped shirt dress from Sport Max Code – and Mike opted to enjoy their five-star hospitality instead of sitting in the Royal Box.

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Zara looked stunning in Sport Max Code

It didn't go to waste though as the Duchess of Cornwall, the Countess of Wessex, the Duke of Kent, Lady Helen Taylor and guest of honour Prince Albert of Monaco all enjoyed the action on the court from the Royal Box.

Other guests invited to sit in the box include the Duchess of Cambridge's mother, Carole Middleton, Twiggy, Anna Wintour, Sir Michael Parkinson and Dame Shirley Bassey.

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Mike and Zara didn't sit in the Royal Box

The coveted places are usually reserved for the likes of Prince William and Kate, who is patron of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, and other members of the royal family.

To secure an invitation to one of the 74 seats available, you have to be invited by the Chairman of the All England Club. Guests usually include heads of government, people from the world of tennis, commercial partners, British armed forces, prominent media organisations, supporters of British tennis and more.

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