He is no stranger to speaking on stage in public. However, Prince William seemed to get his words in a muddle as he presented a lifetime achievement award to American Olympian Michael Phelps.
As one social media commentator joked: “It was a case of all the right words, but not in the right order.” The 34 year old, second in line to the throne, told Mr Phelps, 31, that his haul of 23 medals “pales into sheer superhuman history.”
Prince William then confused matters even further by adding: “It’ll be many, many years before, if ever, anyone stands here again and calls you the greatest athlete in history.”
Mr Phelps, on the other hand, was praised for his own articulate speech. Some people commented that perhaps Prince William was star struck.
Meanwhile, the coveted British Sports Personality of the Year award went to tennis star Andy Murray, who has ended 2016 as the world’s top tennis player. It has been an incredible year for Mr Murray, who has won Olympic gold and a second Wimbledon title.
Mr Murray, 29, was in Miami so could not attend the ceremony. And, his acceptance of the award, which had been sent out to the US just in case, had its own awkward moments, as bikini-clad sun worshippers could be seen in camera shot at the swimming pool he was standing in front of. He was also left standing smiling with his award for what seemed like several minutes as the end credits rolled.
Triathlete Alistair Brownlee was second, after he helped his brother Jonny over the finish line at the World Triathlon Series. Meanwhile showjumper Nick Skelton came third, after coming back to the sport following a fall in which he broke his neck, to take gold in the individual show jumping in this year’s Olympic Games.