Recalls meeting Prince Philip who asked him which football team he supported
The Duke of Edinburgh was very much a sporting man. In Malta he played polo and when in Malta he always kept his appointment to play with the Marsa Polo Club. Conscious of the love of the Maltese for football, in 1957 he met a scout from Malta at Sutton Park and asked him about football.
In Malta, the Duke played polo with Lord Mountbatten’s, who was also the club President. Mark Darmanin said Prince Philip is part of the history of the club which is the oldest n Europe.
He said the Prince loved horses and was a very competitive person. The club had been founded in 1868 and when Philip was in Malta together with Lord Mountbatten who was his “Uncle Dickie”, Philip was included in the team.
Darmanin recalled a statal visit by the Duke in 1992 when he followed a part of a polo match at Marsa. Attended the presentation and spoke to Maltese players.
“We played for the Prince Louis Cup which was donated by his uncle”, said Darmanin. The match was hard-contested and his team worked hard to win. The game remains enshrined in his mind because his father Salvu was in the team
He said when his father received the Cup, the Prince turned on him and said “I recognise your style. Who taught you? And my father told him: your uncle taught me how to play polo.’ My father was taught the game of polo by Lord Mountbatten.”
Another Maltese who met the Duke of Edinburgh is Randolph Camilleri. In 1957 when he was aged 13, he was given the opportunity to speak with the Queen and the Duke during the Scouts Jamboree at Sutton Park.
Camilleri said the Duke, aware that Malta is soccer crazy asked him who he supported and of course he said “Floriana” because he was in the Floriana Scouts contingent. The Queen then asked him where he was from.