Britain’s hopes of a new Wimbledon champion were kept alive yesterday as Cameron Norrie beat America’s Tommy Paul in straight sets 6-4 7-5 6-4. The match was already Norrie’s Grand Slam last-16 debut but victory meant the world number 12 went one better as he bagged his first-ever place in the last eight of a major.
He will now play Belgium’s David Goffin in the quarter-finals on Tuesday as he looks to become the first British player to win Wimbledon since Andy Murray in 2016. Elsewhere on Sunday, Norrie’s fellow Briton Heather Watson saw her Wimbledon dreams come to an end as she was defeated by Germany’s Jule Niemeier in the women’s singles. Their clash on Centre Court was watched by thousands of tennis fans, including famous faces in a packed Royal Box.
The exclusive seating area at the SW19 venue is reserved for “friends and guests of Wimbledon”, which includes British and foreign royals, celebrities and other figures. The current Championships have already hosted royal tennis fans, as Princess Michael of Kent and HRH The Duchess of Gloucester were both in attendance earlier this week.
Wimbledon’s royal box has hosted all the core members of The Firm over the years, including the Queen, Prince Charles, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge. Meghan Markle also attended Wimbledon in July 2019 before she and Prince Harry stepped down from their royal roles.
The Duchess of Sussex was spotted in the stands cheering on her friend Serena Williams, who dramatically crashed out in the second round as she attempted to defend her Wimbledon crown. However, Meghan’s visit became mired in controversy over what one Wimbledon dubbed an “uncomfortable” moment which “was bonkers”.
Media consultant Sally Jones, who sat on the same row as Harry’s wife, claimed she was stopped from taking pictures of her, even though she was trying to get a snap of the tennis. She said a royal protection officer asked her: “Would you not take photographs of the Duchess. She’s here in a private capacity.”
The tennis fan said she was stunned as she was trying to capture Williams’ match and had not even noticed Meghan. She told the Daily Telegraph: “I think this royal protection officer was quite embarrassed. “He appeared a bit mystified as to why he was being asked to make such a request. “I told him it was bonkers and that even if I had been trying to snap the Duchess I’d have got a blurry picture of her right ear.
“Apart from anything else, there were hundreds of people clicking away. “I said to him; have you thought about having a word with any of those television cameras? He looked a little uncomfortable.” Despite the apparent concerns by the royal security, Meghan appeared relaxed as she watched Williams.
The Duchess was pictured smiling as she stepped out in a fedora, a pinstripe blazer and jeans for day four of the Championships. Ms Jones opened up further about what she claimed was the overzealous royal security in an opinion piece for the Telegraph. She wrote: “This puzzlingly random control freakery is in direct contravention of royal practice.
“Most of the Queen’s extended family appearing in public, whether in a public or private capacity, are generally neither surprised nor affronted to be surveyed or photographed by a predominantly sympathetic public, delighted at a chance encounter with even lesser royal lights.
“As a journalist, I have covered scores of ‘royal rotas’ over the years, from the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana and Prince Edward’s first appearance as a Cambridge undergraduate on an archaeological dig at the Roman city of Wroxeter to his own wedding at Windsor Castle. “I have often witnessed the sheer joy created among ordinary citizens by proximity to royalty.”
Coverage of Wimbledon is shown live across the BBC this afternoon.