Duchess of Cambridge meets her match in Emma Raducanu as they take to the court for game of doubles

·2 min read
Playing doubles at the National Tennis Centre, the women teamed up for their first shots - Jeremy Selwyn
Playing doubles at the National Tennis Centre, the women teamed up for their first shots - Jeremy Selwyn

Britain's tennis queens took to the court today for a game of doubles, as the Duchess of Cambridge and Emma Raducanu teamed up for a celebration of British sporting excellence.

The Duchess, a keen amateur tennis player and patron of the Lawn Tennis Association, met her match in Raducanu, the 18-year-old toast of the sport whose surprise win in New York this month charmed the world.

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."

Duchess of Cambridge poses with British US Open champions Emma Raducanu, Joe Salisbury, Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid - Julian Finney/Getty Images
Duchess of Cambridge poses with British US Open champions Emma Raducanu, Joe Salisbury, Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid - Julian Finney/Getty Images

The two women were joined on the court by Britain's tennis stars Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid, who won the men's wheelchair doubles, and men's doubles champion Joe Salisbury.

Playing doubles at the National Tennis Centre, the women teamed up for their first shots, before swapping to opposite sides of the court.

Afterwards, Raducanu said she was “very, very impressed” with the Duchess of Cambridge’s tennis, telling ITV: “Her forehand is incredible - it was a lot of fun to play tennis with the Duchess.”

Earlier this month, the Telegraph revealed that the Duchess hoped to congratulate Raducanu in person once she returned from America.

The Queen and Duchess have already sent a note of congratulations to the tennis star, with Raducanu saying she was "very very honoured" to have received their notes.

Duchess of Cambridge celebrates during the match - Jeremy Selwyn
Duchess of Cambridge celebrates during the match - Jeremy Selwyn
Emma Raducanu takes a swing - Jeremy Selwyn/AFP
Emma Raducanu takes a swing - Jeremy Selwyn/AFP

Today, the Duchess met Emma for the first time, along with her fellow US Open champions Joe Salisbury, Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid.

She is also due to meet young tennis players from across the UK who hope to follow in their footsteps, hearing about the work the LTA is doing to improve participation.

Duchess of Cambridge, left, reacts as she plays with US Open Champion Emma Raducanu - Jeremy Selwyn
Duchess of Cambridge, left, reacts as she plays with US Open Champion Emma Raducanu - Jeremy Selwyn
The Duchess of Cambridge plays a shot - Julian Finney/Getty Images
The Duchess of Cambridge plays a shot - Julian Finney/Getty Images

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."

The LTA Youth programme is aimed at inspiring the next generation of players aged 4-18. and convincing them that tennis is for them whatever their age, gender, ability, disability or background.

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