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Kate wearing green dress at Wimbledon© Tim Clayton - Corbis

The big change Wimbledon organisers could make amid Princess Kate's recovery

The Princess of Wales is patron of the AELTC

Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
June 27, 2024
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The Princess of Wales is a huge tennis fan and a regular at Wimbledon, but it is not yet known whether she will make an appearance at this year's tournament amid her ongoing cancer treatment. 

And now the All England Club chair Debbie Jevans has confirmed that they are "staying flexible" over who will present the trophies during the final if Kate is unable to attend.

The Princess traditionally steps out onto Centre Court to present the trophies to the winners of the men's and ladies' finals in her role as patron of the  All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC).

Jevans told Telegraph Sport: "We're hopeful that the Princess of Wales will be able to present the trophies as the Club’s patron, but her health and recovery is the priority. We don't know what we don’t know. All we've said is that we'll work with her and give her as much flexibility as possible."

She added: "I don't know who would present the trophies as an alternative – that's something to consider nearer the time if necessary. We're staying flexible. When we hear we’ll then think about what's the right thing to do."

Kate Middleton gives the trophy to Carlos Alcaraz - Wimbledon 2023© Shi Tang
Kate presenting the trophy to Carlos Alcaraz at Wimbledon 2023 men's final

It comes just weeks after the Princess of Wales shared a moving update about her treatment, saying she is "making good progress" but "there are good days and bad days". 

Kate added that she hopes to "join a few public engagements over the summer", while "equally knowing I am not out of the woods yet".

On 15 June, she made her first public appearance since her cancer diagnosis was confirmed in March – appearing at Trooping the Colour with her family. 

LISTEN: Inside Trooping the Colour

The ultimate tennis fan

The Princess' love of tennis is well documented and she's been attending Wimbledon since before her marriage to Prince William. 

kate talking to charlotte and george© Getty
George and Charlotte are tennis fans like their mother

During an appearance on BBC documentary, Sue Barker: Our Wimbledon, in 2017, Kate said: "I have watched Wimbledon, that was very much part of my growing up. It's such a quintessential part of the English summer, and I think it really inspires youngsters, myself, it inspired me when I was younger to get involved in the game. It hasn't changed either, I think that's what's so wonderful."

WATCH: Princess Kate is the ultimate Wimbledon fan

She has rarely missed the tournament, except in 2013, when she couldn't see Andy Murray's first Wimbledon victory as she was heavily pregnant with Prince George at the time.

princess kate roger federer throwing tennis ball© Thomas Lovelock - AELTC
Princess Kate appeared alongside Roger Federer to shine a light on Ball Boys and Girls at The Championships in 2023

Kate reportedly used to take lessons at the exclusive Hurlingham Club in Fulham and she's been lucky enough to play with some of the biggest tennis stars, including Roger Federer and Emma Raducanu. 

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