WIMBLEDON, England – The Princess of Wales made a royal point against one of the kings of men’s professional tennis on Sunday.
Catherine and Roger Federer met the ball boys and ball girls at Wimbledon, took part in their training and even played a game of doubles, Tennis.com reported.
Federer, 41, who has won the Wimbledon men’s singles title a record eight times, is now retired. He had a 105-14 record at the All England Club, according to the tennis news website.
Kate managed to win a point against Federer, hitting a passing shot while he was at the net, CNN reported.
“I think it was on the line, amazing,” Federer laughed in a video released by Wimbledon organizers.
Federer and the princess learned what is expected during the tennis ball change exercise, and also what sets Wimbledon, the grass-court tournament played over a fortnight, different from the other three Grand Slam events. This year’s tournament begins on July 3.
“At the Australian Open, you’re allowed to catch it (out of the air),” Federer notes after Kate makes an outstanding catch on the fly, Tennis.com reported.
“Here, you’re meant to let it bounce,” Mollie, one of the ball girls teaching the princess the proper way to catch the tennis ball.
“The first game’s very nerve-wracking,” a ball boy says during the exercise, noting the pressure to perform properly on Centre Court. “But after a while you get used to it.”
“To see the training and the dedication and the amount of time that is put into training and making sure that this goes well on the day for the champions who are playing at Wimbledon, it’s incredible to see it behind the scenes,” Catherine said, according to the ATP Tour website.
The princess has often been a spectator at Wimbledon, watching matches from the Royal Box. She recently has been presenting trophies to the tournament’s winners, according to CNN.
Federer knows about being a ballboy. He served as one as a youth in his hometown of Basel, Switzerland, the cable news network reported.
“This is proper practice, I’m really impressed,” Federer said.
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