Although everyone was shocked when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped back from their royal duties, it’s actually not that uncommon for family members to take on varying roles in the monarchy. Sure, Harry was a little more prominent given his place in the line of succession, but his cousins, like Zara Tindall, have always had the privilege of leading semi-normal lives outside of the Firm.
OK, it’s not exactly normal to have Queen Elizabeth as your grandma, but in the grand scheme of things, Zara, and her husband Mike, are more just like regular celebs over in Britain than anything else. Zara is the daughter of Princess Anne and the oldest grandchild in the family. When she was born, she was sixth in line of succession but now she is 19, so she’s pretty free to live her own life as she sees fit. Zara is an equestrian and fairly athletic, so it only makes sense that she married another athlete in 2010: rugby player Mike Tindall.
They have a great meet-cute story
According to an interview with 60 Minutes Australia, Zara Tindall, née Phillips, was introduced to Mike Tindall at a bar, by none other than her little cousin Prince Harry. The rugby player was “drowning his sorrows” at the Manly Wharf bar in Sydney, Australia, during the 2003 Rugby World Cup — he had just been dropped from Team England right before the semi-finals. “It kind of went from there,” Zara said.
Tindall said that his friend also helped with the matchmaking, in an interview with Hello!. He said, “I just really liked her. It wasn’t love at first sight — I wasn’t looking for romance. But, naturally, I wasn’t unmoved by her. She is a stunning woman. There was something there.” The rugby player, who retired in 2014, added that he is a “traditional bloke” but it still wasn’t hard to fit in with the royals. “It’s not hard for me. The royals make it easy by being so normal. They’re a close family, no different from any other,” Tindall stated, noting that he is good “pals” with William and Harry.
After tying the knot in 2010, the couple welcomed three children together: Mia, Lena, and Lucas. Over the years, they’ve continued to support each other — even through the rugby player breaking his nose a total of eight times (via the Telegraph) before getting out of the game. He will likely be by her side as her family mourns Prince Philip, too, after his death in April 2021.
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