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No marriage, only game for players

It's the marriage season in Pakistan but, for two just-engaged cricketers, the game comes first and the nuptials will have to wait for the ongoing Test and ODI against India to conclude.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2006 13:37 IST

It's the marriage season in Pakistan but, for two just-engaged cricketers, the game comes first and the nuptials will have to wait for the ongoing Test and one-day series against India to conclude.

Salman Butt, the 20-year-old diminutive opener, got engaged to Maria Rahim, younger sister of Pakistani tennis champion Mariam Rahim, a day before Eid-ul-Azha in Lahore on January 10.

Several of his teammates, including captain Inzamam-ul-Haq, Mohammed Yousuf, Imran Farhat and Kamran Akmal, were present at the engagement ceremony.

Akmal himself got engaged about two weeks ago. The dapper stumper, who scored the fastest Test century ever by a wicketkeeper when he smashed an 81-ball 102 in Lahore on Saturday, had turned 23 a day before he broke Australian Adam Gilchrist's record.

Both Butt and Akmal have said the 'nikah' or formal marriage will have to wait until after the 45-day cricket series concludes on February 19.

There has been a spate of marriages here in Lahore and elsewhere in Pakistan with hotels busy hosting reception ceremonies and other related programmes.

"Most marriages take place these days because Muslims do not marry during the solemn month of Moharrum (that begins towards the end of January) or, for that matter, during Ramzan," said a local resident.

First Published: Jan 17, 2006 13:37 IST