Prince William and Kate Middleton had a rare PDA that signalled their support for each other during a difficult start to their Boston trip, a body language expert has said.
The Prince and Princess of Wales’ three day tour of the US has been overshadowed by the release of Harry and Meghan’s emotional trailer for their new Netflix series. And also the resignation of William’s godmother Lady Susan Hussey after campaigner Ngozi Fulani said she had been racially insulted by the royal aide at a reception earlier this week.
The royal couple are in the USA to attend the Earthshot Prize ceremony – their global environmental initiative – and were seen cheering on the Boston Celtics as the sat courtside to watch the action.
They stood for the national anthem The Star Spangled Banner, but were reportedly later the subject of small pockets of boos around the stadium when the couple appeared on the big screens at the event.
Kate is pictured at one point placing a hand on William's knee before they were seen clutching each other.
According to body language expert Judi James, it appeared to be a "subliminal need for support".
"Kate and William’s show-stopping ‘touch and clutch’ gesture at the basketball might have defined them brand-wise as a close, romantic and rather sexy couple to people in the US," she told The Mirror.
"But to those of us back in the UK who know how rare this level of PDA is for the couple, there is a hint that the current crisis might have created a subliminal need for support and encouragement for William in particular.
"Kate has placed a hand on his thigh here and William has responded with a signal of endorsement by placing his hand over hers and clutching it in a way that hints at gratitude for the backup."
Meanwhile, Judi added that Kate tried to show her fun side during the event and the couple appeared to pretend not to hear any boos if they did catch them.
She added: "The couple arrived looking slick, modern and rather corporate, creating an even-status, a confident double act with their arms hanging at their sides and with their intensely mirrored body language showing like-minded thinking.
"At the basketball though Kate in particular looked keen to show her fun, relaxed and low-status side, dropping her regal elegance and sitting in various poses to look like a normal young woman enjoying the game.
"She and William used frequent bouts of eye contact and often sat and talked with their heads close, ramping up the romance.
"Kate laughed open-mouthed at seeing them on screen and if there were boos and the couple did hear them they seem to have tried to pretend they didn’t, with just those tactile moments suggesting a silent need for some mutual support."
Just minutes ahead of Netflix docuseries Harry & Meghan unleashing its first promotional footage, Kate and William also released their own video, giving millions of Instagram followers a peek at their trip to the Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat basketball match.
"Baskets in Boston [basketball emoji] Fantastic to celebrate the arrival of #EarthshotBoston2022 in the city and meet members of the community doing amazing things to protect and restore our planet," read the caption.
"Last night’s @Celtics #HeroAmongUs, Ollie Perrault, fights for environmental justice, working to get more young people involved in climate action – and all this at 15 years old. Amazing work!"
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