Tributes from across the sporting world have been paid to Her Majesty the Queen following the beloved monarch’s death at the age of 96.
The iconic head of the British royal family reigned for 70 years, ever since her father, King George VI, passed away in 1952.
Her coronation was held the following year on June 2, 1953 and she was the longest-reigning British monarch in history.
A statement published on the Buckingham Palace website said: “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon.
“The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
Messages have flooded in from across the horse racing world for the monarch, who not only loved the sport but was also heavily involved in it.
The Queen became a renowned top class breeder in her own right and was twice a leading owner, with Her Majesty’s horses winning five English Classics and 24 races at Royal Ascot.
As well as her love for the track, the Queen was involved in a number of historic sporting events.
The monarch was on hand to pass over the Jules Rimet Trophy to Bobby Moore when England were crowned World Cup winners in 1966, as well as the European Championship trophy to Jurgen Klinsmann when Germany beat Czech Republic in the Euro 96 final at the old Wembley Stadium.
Elizabeth was involved in the opening of two Olympic Games – including London 2012 – and also routinely visited her own royal box at Wimbledon’s Centre Court, presenting a number of trophies to the winners, including Britain’s last female champion Virginia Wade.
The Queen was a hugely loved figure around the world, and one of the most recognisable people on the planet.
And it was fitting that the sporting world joined together to memorialise a monarch who will be remembered for generations.
The Premier League said it was “deeply saddened” by The Queen’s death.
“Our thoughts and condolences are with The Royal Family and everyone around the world mourning the loss of Her Majesty,” the league said.
The Rugby Football Union posted its own tribute which read: “On behalf of the rugby union community in England, all at the Rugby Football Union are very saddened to hear of the death of Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II and offer our condolences to the whole Royal Family at this time.”
The Queen was a patron of the Professional Golfers’ Association and chief executive Robert Maxfield paid tribute, saying in a statement: “On behalf of the Members and staff of The PGA, I would like to offer our deepest sympathies to the Royal Family.
“We are immensely proud that Her Majesty The Queen was a Patron of The Association.”
Former 16-time world darts champion Phil Taylor tweeted: “What an amazing life. Will be sadly missed by Millions of people. Rest in Peace your Majesty.”
A message on Twitter from Wimbledon read: “We wish to convey our deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolences to The Royal Family on the sad passing of Her Majesty The Queen.”
The WTA and ATP added their tributes, saying: “We are saddened to hear of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. We are grateful for her contributions to tennis, and our thoughts and condolences are with the British Royal Family.”
The Great Britain and Northern Ireland Paralympic team sent condolences to the Royal Family.
A statement from ParalympicsGB read: “It is with immense sadness that we learn of the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. We send our sincere condolences to the Royal Family including our Royal Patron HRH the Earl of Wessex.
“The thoughts of the Paralympic family are with them at this sad time.”
Brazilian great Pele paid tribute and reflected on his meeting with the Queen in 1968.
“I have been a great admirer of Queen Elizabeth II since the first time I saw her in person, in 1968, when she came to Brazil to witness our love for football and experienced the magic of a packed Maracana,” he tweeted.
“Her deeds have marked generations. This legacy will last forever.”
Heavyweight boxers Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua put aside their rivalry to issue brief statements on their respective social media accounts.
Fury posted a picture with the words “Thoughts & prayers with my Queen tonight, may God be with you”, whilst Joshua wrote simply: “Rest in peace”.