She shoots ... she scores! Kate revives her hockey past

Catherine, Duchess  of Cambridge plays hockey with the GB hockey teams at the Riverside Arena in the Olympic Park in London March 15, 2012. (Reuters)

No one would suggest that the Duchess of Cambridge is ready for the Toronto Maple Leafs ... well, hold it a minute ... then again, why not?

Kate dressKate showed some good form on Thursday as she grabbed the English equivalent of a hockey stick -- meant for field, not ice -- to demonstrate some long-ago hockey skills and promote the Britain's national team efforts toward the 2012 Olympics. 

Wearing tight jeans, a sweatshirt and adidas running shoes, the Duchess was quick to play down her schoolgirl experience as captain of the Malborough College's field hockey team.

“I was really looking forward to coming here, but now I am here and have discovered I have to play I am not feeling so confident," she told the players as she was handed a stick.

Eyeing the assembled media, she pleaded: “Oh please don't tell me I have to do it in front of all these people! I don't want anyone to watch!”

Later in the afternoon, Kate traded in her sporty attire for a Orla Keily dress (right) as she attended the Dulwich Picture Gallery in London with her in-laws, Prince Charles and Camilla. It marked Kate's official introduction to one of Charles's charities, The Prince’s Foundation for Children and the Arts.

One of the most interesting moments came when Kate and Charles were called upon to try their hand at creating artwork with an iron. It was like "being at home," Kate quipped as she eyed the appliance. Charles wasn't quite so sure-handed and after doing his best with it, left the hot iron facedown on the table. Kate quickly stood it up (see picture below).

WilliamjTo start the day, however, Kate was on her own in representing the royals in front of Britain's hockey teams and a regiment of photographers. “Wow, that was no pressure then," she said after enduring the live demonstration of her skills. "I was determined to keep on going until I scored.”

The scene was reminiscent of Prince William taking some shots with a hockey stick last summer in Yellowknife (right). Kate was much more properly attired this time, and, unlike William, she actually scored a goal (on her fourth attempt).

Kate, who an official Olympic Ambassador, said she hadn't played hockey since 2005. “This is going to be so embarrassing," she said before taking up the team's challenge. "My brain thinks I can do all these wonderful things but my body just doesn't play ball."

The pressure to perform was less in the afternoon as Kate joined Charles and Camilla at the picture gallery. It was the young artists who took centre stage there with a special exhibition of their work.

It was Kate's introduction to her father-in-law's charity, which is a natural extention of the Duchess's own charity work with The Art Room.

On Thursday, the royals got a glimpse of the Children & the Arts Face Britain project, a country-wide effort where portraits from children aged 4 to 16 will form an image of the Queen. It will be projected on the front of Buckingham Palace in April and show around the UK on 400 screens.

Kate 2
The Duchess of Cambridge smiles as she meets the British Olympic hockey teams at the Riverside Arena in the Olympic Park, London, on Thursday. (AP)

Kate4Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge laughs as she gives a demonstration of her field hockey prowess with the British national teams. (AFP/Getty Images)


















Kate art1
Kate waves while Prince Charles takes care of something in his eye on arrival at the Prince's Foundation for Children and the Arts at the Dulwich Gallery in South London. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kate art2
Kate and Camilla receive gifts during a visit the Prince's Foundation for Children and the Arts at the Dulwich Gallery. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kate iron
Here's something you won't see everyday -- Kate and Charles (especially) ironing. It was all part of the art class at the Dulwich Gallery. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kate art
Kate arrives to visit the Prince's Foundation for Children and the Arts at the Dulwich Gallery in South London on Thursday. (AFP/Getty Images)



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