Kate Middleton bonded with Prince Philip over love of hockey – ‘Kindness he showed her’

Prince William and Kate Middleton arrive at carol concert

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The Duchess of Cambridge, 39, was a hockey team member in high school and according to her school pal Gemma Williamson, the royal was particularly good at it. Ms Williamson told the Daily Mail “every boy in school fancied Kate rotten” after she impressed them with her talent at hockey and cross-country running.

Hockey was also one of Prince Philip’s many hobbies with gardening, sailing and flying.

The late Prince was once captain of the hockey and cricket teams while at Gordonstoun School.

In the 1950s, he often played in charity cricket matches in aid of the National Playing Fields Association, of which he became President in 1948.

He was also elected twice to be President of the Marylebone Cricket Club.

The Duchess and the Prince had the opportunity to bond for several years, as Prince William explained earlier this year.

In a statement following the death of his grandfather, the Duke of Cambridge said: “I will always be grateful that my wife had so many years to get to know my grandfather and for the kindness he showed her.

“I will never take for granted the special memories my children will always have of their great-grandpa coming to collect them in his carriage and seeing for themselves his infectious sense of adventure as well as his mischievous sense of humour!”

Kate is known as a very sporty Duchess and has been photographed playing all sorts of games from tennis, cricket and basketball to rowing and tree climbing.

The mother of three once said exercise had always played a massive role in her wellbeing.

She revealed: “It was while at school that I realised my love of sport.

“Sport has been a huge part of my life, and I feel incredibly grateful for the opportunities I had to get outside and play.”

Years before meeting Prince Philip, the Duchess also took part in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award program while in the sixth form.

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She challenged her love of sports and adventure in nature and said the program helped her grow.

Kate said: “The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is such a great way for young people to grow in confidence, learn new skills, work as part of a team and have great fun along the way.”

She added: “I can remember trying to cook bacon in the soaking wet.

“Everything was just sopping, and I was trying and trying to cook bacon.”

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