*** ----> Brunei’s polo-playing prince marries commoner | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

Brunei’s polo-playing prince marries commoner

AFP | Bandar Seri Begawan

The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com

Brunei’s polo-playing Prince Abdul Mateen, one of Asia’s most eligible bachelors, married his commoner fiancee yesterday as part of a lavish 10- day celebration in the oil-rich sultanate.

An Islamic marriage ceremony for the 32-year-old prince and Yang Mulia Anisha Rosnah, 29, was held inside a gold-domed mosque in the capital Bandar Seri Begawan. Mateen is the 10th child of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah -- the world’s longest reigning monarch and once the richest man on the planet -- and is well down the succession pecking order.

His bride -- the granddaughter of one of his father’s key advisers and a member of a prominent family in Brunei -- reportedly has a fashion brand and co-owns a tourism business. Mateen, wearing a traditional white outfit decorated with diamond-shaped motifs and a matching headpiece, was driven to the mosque in a luxury saloon.

He sat on an elevated yellow cushion in front of an imam who presided over the male-only ceremony attended by the sultan and other relatives and guests. After a 17-gun salute, Mateen approached his father and held his hand as the sultan recited a prayer for the royal couple. He then bowed, touching his father’s hand with his forehead. As the motorcade left the mosque, Mateen waved to onlookers standing in the tropical heat.

Celebrations for the royal wedding reach their climax on Sunday with a glittering ceremony in the 1,788-room palace and an elaborate procession. The guest list is expected to include international royalty and political leaders. “It’s like a fairytale,” university student Syahida Wafa Mohamed Shah, 22, told AFP on Wednesday, near the Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque, where the marriage was solemnised.