An Australian athlete’s cheeky request left Prince Harry visibly gobsmacked at the Invictus Games.
The Duke of Sussex is proving to Invictus Games competitors he is one of them as competition continues in Sydney.
The newly married royal took his time stopping to speak with wounded former servicemen and women from across the globe, pausing to place a hand on their scars or to inspect their prosthetic limbs.
“He’s been there, he’s done it, he’s experienced everything that we have all been through,” Australian cycling competitor Jarrod Kent said.
Prince Harry gracefully refused to sign a green and gold pair of budgie smugglers despite the good-natured pleas of Mr Kent and two of his mates.
Ben Yeomans, Damien Irish and Kent were all smiles and had nothing but praise for the Duke after meeting him on Sunday at the Invictus Games cycling event.
The three Aussie larrikins said they understood it wouldn’t have been a good look in front of the clicking shutters of the worlds press.
“He was totally conscious of that,” Mr Kent laughed.
“We were hoping that he’d try them on, but oh well next time.
“To be honest he’s so down to earth, one of the boys really.”
Adding further weight to the men’s description of Prince Harry as a down to earth guy was the revelation that he already owned a pair of the iconic swimmers.
Despite starting his chat with the Invictus patron with a laugh, Yeomans said there was a serious moment when he and his mates tried to convey to the prince their gratitude for what he had started.
“We spoke about the games and how inspiring he is to us,” Mr Yeomans said.
“He’s absolutely amazing, getting the word out there and inspiring the public and getting everyone behind it.”