Kate Middleton Officially Replaces Prince Harry As Patron Of The Rugby Football League & Rugby Football Union, Duchess Is 'Thrilled' About The New Roles
Kate Middleton will officially replace Prince Harry as patron of the Rugby Football League and the Rugby Football Union.
As previously reported by OK!, Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, were stripped of their links to royal and military patronages last year. The move came after they confirmed to Queen Elizabeth II that they would not be returning to their royal duties after first stepping back in March 2020.
"I am so thrilled to become Patron of the @TheRFL and @EnglandRugby. Two fantastic organisations who are committed to harnessing the power that sport can have in bringing communities together and helping individuals flourish," Kate shared on Twitter Wednesday, February 2, along with a video of the duchess showing off her rugby skills.
"I look forward to working with them across all levels of the games, and to cheering England on in what promises to be an exciting year for both sports!" she added.
The announcement makes Kate the first royal to take over some of Harry and Meghan's former royal roles.
Bill Sweeney, chief executive of the RFU, said it was a great honor to welcome Kate as their new patron, per Breaking News. "Our aim is to enrich lives, introduce more people to rugby union, develop the sport for future generations and create a successful, thriving game across the country," he shared.
The chief executive of the RFL, Ralph Rimmer, said they were also honored to have Kate join them and that the organization looks forward to working with her, the outlet reported.
"We are delighted to welcome her as we prepare to host Men’s, Women’s, Wheelchair and Physical Disability Rugby League World Cups in England this autumn," the chief exec reportedly said. "Our sport’s history has been built on a commitment to tackling inequalities and we honour that through our focus on having a positive social impact well beyond the pitch."
Kate is also patron of the All England Lawn and Tennis Croquet Club, the Lawn Tennis Association, SportsAid and the 1851 Trust, The Mirror reported. Meanwhile, her husband, Prince William, is patron of the Welsh Rugby Union.
Meghan, 40, was revoked of her patronages to the National Theatre and the Association of Commonwealth Universities. Meanwhile, her husband, 37, was also stripped of his honorary titles as Captain-General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of RAF base Honington and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of Small Ships and Diving of the military.