Mike Tindalls grandmother was against his wedding to royal Zara

Marrying a member of the Royal family is the stuff of fairy tales, except for former England rugby player Mike Tindall.

Despite being happily married to Zara Phillips, who is the niece of King Charles III, for over a decade – it appears Mike’s family were at first not so easily convinced.

Speaking to The Times in a joint interview his son, Mike's dad Phil Tindall admitted that there had been tensions within the family at the time.

He explained that it was Mike’s maternal grandmother who was the most concerned, stating: "He started playing for England in 2000 and it wasn't too long before he met and moved in with Zara. [Wife] Linda's mum was dead against it. In her day, royalty married royalty and she thought the wedding would be shunned.”

However, the family matriarch should not have been so concerned as Phil revealed that the Royal family welcomed Mike with open arms.

“But right from the start the whole family was just lovely. We'd go on a Friday night to watch the match and stop over. Sometimes we'd all go out for lunch with Zara's mum on Sunday before we went home.”

In the same interview with The Times, Phil also revealed that the family also spent time getting to know Zara's father Mark, with Prince Harry also regularly watching the rugby with the family.

Zara and Mike would subsequently marry in a lavish ceremony held at Canongate Kirk near Edinburgh in July 2011.

The spectacular wedding had over 400 guests in attendance, including many senior members of the Royal Family.

Sadly, Mike’s grandmother would never meet Zara as she passed away shortly before their wedding.

"Linda's mum died before she could meet Zara, but I know she'd have loved her as much as we do because she and Mike are perfect for each other. What one starts, the other finishes; they are a fantastic team."

Since then, the couple have gone on to have three children: Mia, eight, Lena, four, and little Lucas, one.

With his children still so young, Mike will be keen to return home after his stint in the I’m A Celeb jungle alongside Lioness Jill Scott.

Nevertheless, many have expressed concerns about Mike’s appearance on the ITV reality show – fearing it will lead to embarrassment for the Royal Family.

The ex-England captain has already shared an awkward moment between himself and his mother-in-law, Princess Anne at Zara’s 30th birthday party.

Whilst trying to perform a dance move, the rugby pro ripped his trousers in front of Princess Anne to reveal a rather rude saying emblazoned on his pants.

With a wry smile, Mike said that his boxer had "Nibble my nuts" written on the back of them – much to the horror of of his mother-in-law.


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