Mike Tindall’s ‘emotional’ goodbye to family as he leaves for the I’m A Celeb jungle

The former rugby captain said goodbye to his wife and children before heading off to film in Australia

Mike Tindall
(Image credit: ITV/Future)

Before setting off for the jungle ahead of I'm A Celebrity's 2022 debut, Mike Tindall shared an emotional goodbye with his wife, Zara Phillips, and his children.

Ahead of I'm A Celebrity's first episode of 2022, Mike Tindall has traded in the royal estate he shares with his family for the questionable comfort of the Australian jungle.

Speaking to The Daily Star, he admitted saying goodbye to his family was "emotional," and that during his send off, he was warned by wife Zara, 41, to take care and to make sure that he eats.

Mike Tindall and Zara Phillips

(Image credit: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

Tindall admitted that while a few tears fell during his parting, he somewhat understandably wished there had been more sadness from his children. He revealed, "I expected there to be more tears than there actually are."

Reflecting on leaving his wife at home in Gloucestershire, he said: "Zara gets it and supports it – with both our careers, she goes away competing for weeks at a time and I always went on tours for three-four weeks in the summer, so our relationship has always been built to deal with that and we’re good at compartmentalising and finding ways to deal with it.

"We did meet in Australia – it would been, now you’re testing my knowledge of what the dates should be. We would have met for the first time in November 2003."

After a long courtship, the couple were married in 2011 and now have three children; Mia, eight, Lena, three, and Lucas, one. Lovingly referring to his wife as 'Z', Mike explained "With the kids it’ll be the case of they’d be in bed before the show goes out on a normal evening, so it’ll be down to Z to get them the highlights – only the good stuff probably."

Mike Tindall and his daughter Lena

(Image credit: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

According to The Sun, Zara and the couple's children will remain at home but may fly out if Mike makes it to the final.

When asked if the family would come out to support him, Mike said, “We’re not entirely sure yet, we haven’t fully made that decision and it’s probably how deep into the show we go. We have some work out here so if it got to the end then hopefully she’d be able to come out. We will have to wait and see really."

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Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse
Royal News and Entertainment writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is royal news and entertainment writer for Goodto.com. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.