Prince Harry Sends Polo Ball Straight at Photographers: 'I Was Trying to Give You a Good Shot!'
It was a close call!
The dense, hard ball flew in at shoulder height and narrowly missed a few photographers and crashed into a fence dividing the press area from the VIP’s section, making a surprised security guard nearly jump out of his skin.
The 33-year-old recognized photographer Tim Rooke and called out, “Sorry Rookie. I was trying to give you a good shot!”
Harry was playing on the Sentebale St. Regis team captained by his pal Nacho Figueras, a polo star who previously participated in the charity match in 2016, against the Royal Salute team, captained by Malcolm Borwick. The royal’s team was winning 3-1 at the time of the mishap.
His team soon made it 4-1 in the last chukka, or period. However, their rivals racked up three goals in a minute, tying up the score with just two minutes left.
The game ended 5-4, with Figueras scoring the final goal to win the Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup.
Figueras tells PEOPLE that Harry’s shot was an accident.
“It was not on purpose,” he said. “He was trying to defend the goal because of my mistake probably and he antes to see if you guys were paying attention”
Meghan Markle — showcasing her laid-back California-girl style in a midi-length denim dress by Carolina Herrera — cheered on Harry throughout the game. After the match, she handed over the winning trophy to Figueras, then turned to Harry and kissed him on the lips.
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As the teams departed, Meghan, 36, affectionately rubbed her husband’s back and the couple — who wed in May — joined hands and walked away.
Sentebale was set up by the 33-year-old royal and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, Africa, in 2006 to help children affected by HIV in Lesotho and Botswana, carrying on Diana’s legacy of dismantling the stigma around HIV/AIDS.
Harry also kicked off a two-day visit to Amsterdam on Monday to attend the International AIDS Conference, where he sat down with young advocates to discuss issues faced by teenagers who have the disease, where he spoke about the benefits of getting young people involved in policy changes and spreading information. With the help of longtime family friend Sir Elton John, 71, Harry also announced the launch of the billion-dollar MenStar Coalition project, a new network of international funders for AIDS research.