Kate Middleton and Emma Raducanu play tennis together as they celebrate champions' homecoming

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge talks to British US Open champion Emma Raducanu as they return to the LTA's National Tennis Centre
(Image credit: Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for LTA)

Kate Middleton played tennis with newly crowned US Open winner Emma Raducanu this week as the pair met in honour of the champions' homecoming. 

Kate Middleton is known for her love of tennis and is the Patron of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, taking over this prestigious role from the Queen in 2016. Like many members of The Firm, Kate often attends Wimbledon and this July, she returned from self-isolation to present the trophy to the winner of the women’s final, Ashleigh Barty. And the Duchess of Cambridge has also been following the performance of British tennis stars in the other competitions.

Earlier this month, Kate shared a sweet message to Emma Raducanu in honour of her extraordinary achievement of reaching the final of the recent US Open. Wishing her luck, Kate was likely just as excited as everyone else to see Emma secure victory and go on to be crowned 2021's US Open Champion. 

Emma Raducanu of Great Britain celebrates with the US Open winner's trophy

The Duchess was amongst those who sent her congratulations to Emma via social media, whilst the tennis player also received a message from the Queen.

Now Kate and Emma have finally got to meet in person since her US Open win, as they played tennis together at a special homecoming event. 

Posting sweet snaps of the occasion on the official Duke and Duchess of Cambridge social media accounts, Kate appeared delighted at being able to play tennis with Emma at the event hosted by the Lawn Tennis Association at the National Tennis Centre. 

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And Emma wasn’t the only US Open tennis champion whom Kate got to meet. The Duchess was also introduced to men’s and mixed doubles winner Joe Salisbury, as well as Alfie Hewitt and Gordon Reid who won the men’s wheelchair doubles. 

All five appeared in a wonderful group photo shared in the Duchess’ social media post. Here the caption proudly declared, ‘In the presence of champions 🏆 Congratulations @emmaraducanu, @joesalisbury92, @alfiehewett6 and @gordonreid on your incredible achievements in this year’s #USOpen. We are all so proud of you!

As reported by The Telegraph, Kate’s tennis skills impressed the professional players, who praised her forehand in particular.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and British US Open champion Emma Raducanu in action at the LTA's National Tennis Centre

Emma reportedly shared, “Her forehand was incredible. I was very impressed. It was a lot of fun.”  

Whilst fellow player Joe is said to have agreed, declaring, “It was really good fun. I was very impressed by Kate’s level. “She obviously loves it, and has played a lot before, but it was good fun to be on court with her. Her forehand was very good.”

Royal fans will no doubt be hoping to get a glimpse of Kate Middleton's tennis skills again in the future.  

Emma Shacklock
Senior Lifestyle Writer

Emma is a Senior Lifestyle Writer with six years of experience working in digital publishing, ranging from book publishing to magazines. She currently looks after all things Lifestyle for Woman&Home, Goodto.com, and My Imperfect Life.