Meghan Markle Has the Cutest Reaction When a Basketball Player Sneaks in a Kiss on the Cheek
The competitors at the Invictus Games can't get enough of Meghan Markle!
During Saturday’s wheelchair basketball final in Sydney, Australia, the Duchess of Sussex, 37, took time to congratulate the players who competed in the match and give them medals — a gold for team USA and silver for the Netherlands.
Meghan made her way down the line, shaking hands with each Dutch athlete, but one in particular surprised her by taking things a step further: he gave the mom-to-be a quick peck on the cheek. In the Netherlands, greeting kisses are customary, though the gesture often involves three kisses!
As usual, Meghan had a sense of humor about it, chuckling in response and continuing with her royal duties unfazed.
For the game, Meghan dressed in a maroon top by Australian brand Scanlan Theodore and black pants with her hair styled half up, half down while Harry, 34, wore a black Invictus Games polo shirt. The parents-to-be, who were greeted by attendees with roaring applause, sat with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Defence Minister Christopher Pyne.
David Beckham, who serves as an Invictus Games ambassador, was also spotted in the crowd with his sons Romeo and Cruz, though they appeared to be seated on the opposite side of the royal couple.
The sweet kiss marks the second time the former Suits actress has gotten slightly closer than expected with a player at the Invictus Games, a Paralympics-style competition for wounded service members and veterans founded by Prince Harry four years ago.
During a sailing event on Sydney Harbor last weekend, both Harry and Meghan received hugs from an American athlete. He wrapped his arms tightly around Harry as Meghan observed and laughed. The bear-like embrace was so intense that Harry was lifted off the ground!
“Now that’s a hug!” Meghan exclaimed. “Nicely done.”
She then introduced herself with a handshake and a much tamer hug, as Harry advised the sailor to not give pregnant Meghan the same greeting. “No, I know,” the man said, laughing with the couple, who are expecting their first child in the spring.
The American in question was a veteran named Ryan Novak, who suffered a severe leg injury that previously left him paralyzed him from the waist down. Doctors said he would never be able to walk again, but he proved them wrong.
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Meghan mentioned him in her surprise speech at the closing ceremony, also on Saturday.
“Not only has Ryan competed in sailing, swimming and athletics this week, but when Harry and I saw him at the finish line of the sailing competition, he literally jumped into our boat — with dexterity and ease, by the way — to give both of us a hug,” she said, adding, “Seeing Ryan’s mom on the water that day, waving a flag to cheer him on was a moment I will never forget.”