Prince William meets Olympic boxing hopeful at Kensington Palace

The 2020 Olympics will get underway in Tokyo this week and boxer Lauren Price will be among the Team GB hopefuls looking to get their had on some silverware. But before heading out to Tokyo for this life-changing event, Lauren Price travelled to Kensington Palace for a meeting with Royalty.

Price, who is from a small village in the Valley in Wales, is a very successful amateur boxer who represents Great Britain at international tournaments.

She has three gold medals (one World Championship, one European Games and one Commonwealth Games) under her belt, alongside five bronze medals (one Commonwealth, there European Championships and one World). She was the first Welsh woman to ever win a Commonwealth Games medal for boxing in 2014, and would go on to win gold in 2018.

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Last month, Lauren made her way to London and to Kensington Palace, where she sat down with The Duke of Cambridge. William was taking on the role of interviewer for BBC Sport. The pair sat outside in the gardens, with social distancing in place to adhere to Covid regulations in place at the time of filming.

Where did her Olympic dream come from? Price explained to the Duke that when she was younger she remembers ‘being sat in the living room with my Nan and Grandad watching the Olympics and seeing Kelly Holmes win gold, and at the time I didn’t know what sport I wanted to do, I just wanted to go to the Olympic Games.’

And now that dream is coming through as she prepares to represent her country and nation: “If I was to go and win a gold medal it would top everything in my career.” Price, who has had an extremely successful career, told The Duke.

Boxing is not the only sport she is good at, however, something which Prince William seemed to envy as he told her he wasn’t even good at one sport… Price played football for Cardiff City and played on the Welsh international team also, as well as being a champion kick-boxer!

Last year was hard for a lot of people, and Lauren had to face her own problems as an athlete during the pandemic. She did not have the right equipment to train in her house – at one point she was using wheelie bins to do squats. But Team GB helped her out and sent her equipment that she could use to keep training during lockdown, when she could not make it to the gym.

The year wasn’t just physically challenging, but also mentally as she began to doubt herself and wonder if she was as good as she was or should have been.

And while the world will be watching, and Team GB will be proud of what she does, there is one special person who, sadly, will not be there. Last year, Lauren lost her grandfather, who had helped to raise her alongside her grandmother as her parents had been unable to. The Duke of Cambridge told Price that her grandfather would, undoubtedly, be very proud of her; William lost his own grandfather in April.

Meanwhile, her grandmother will be sending her inspirational quotes every day – Price’s favourite being ‘shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars’.

There was a lighthearted side to the interview, one of those moments being when Lauren told William how she used to drive a taxi at the weekends while training nights, in order to make her Olympic dream come to fruition. “Bet they didn’t mess with you,” he said as she told him she would pick up drunks on a Friday and Saturday night.

Not many people can say that they have achieved what Price has, not many people in the world get to represent their nation in the Olympics. Another thing that not many people can say has happened to them? That the future King has served them a birthday cake, but that is exactly what William did during his meeting with Lauren! The Duke brought in a boxing themed cake for the athlete, who turned 27 on a couple of weeks ago, to take home with her.

Hopefully Lauren will also be taking something home with her when she returned to Wales from Tokyo and the 2020 Olympic Games! Good luck to all those competing.

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