Princess of Wales to show support for England at Rugby League World Cup match

The Princess of Wales will show her support for England at the Rugby League World Cup quarter-final match.

Kate is to attend the game against Papua New Guinea in Wigan on Saturday, her first match since succeeding the Duke of Sussex as patron of the Rugby Football League (RFL).

She will meet players on the pitch and join a minute of non-silence, held to mark the tournament’s Movember Mental Fitness Match Day, before taking a seat to watch the match.

Simon Johnson, chair of the RFL, said: “We will be delighted and honoured to welcome the Princess of Wales for the first time as the RFL’s Royal Patron.

“With both our England Women and Men’s teams playing important World Cup matches on Saturday, her presence will enhance a special occasion for our sport, for the World Cup and for the famous rugby league town of Wigan.”

Harry launched the draw for the World Cup in January 2020, just over a week after announcing he wanted to step down with wife Meghan as a working royal for personal and financial freedom.

There was an expectation he would attend the tournament hosted by England, but it was postponed for a year after Australia and New Zealand refused to take part, citing safety fears on the back of the pandemic.

Before the game, the princess will speak to representatives from groups who have played a part in the tournament’s social impact programme, which was set up to provide a positive impact to the host towns and cities.

During half time, Kate will meet members of the England Women’s Rugby League team following their match against Canada.

The tournament has showcased the sport of rugby league with the women’s and wheelchair World Cups taking place alongside the men’s championship for the first time.