ANNOUNCED on Twitter – to groans of despair from magazine editors – Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke and his girlfriend Kyly Boldy wed in secret in the Blue Mountains on Tuesday.
Enjoying the stunning autumn weather, bride and groom posed for photographs in a bush setting having married far from the madding crowds in a ceremony kept secret from all but their families.
The photographs were released on the social networking site last night, catching close friends and Clarke’s employer, Cricket Australia, unawares.
Clarke, who is playing for the Pune Warriors in the Indian Premier League, flew back to Australia on four days of family leave for the ceremony. It is not known whether he will rejoin the side – which is coming last in the lucrative competition – for the final match in three days time.
Boldy, a model and brand ambassador, described herself as the ”Luckiest Woman in the world!”, tweeting that May 15 had been the ”Greatest day of my life, so proud to be your Wife”.
Clarke, who broke off an engagement to the model Lara Bingle in 2010, was equally effusive within the 140-character constraints of Twitter. ”Happiest guy in the world. Married @KylyBoldy yesterday in front of our gorgeous families. Couldn’t be happier!”
Clarke later updated his Twitter feed, revealing Boldy designed her own dress with help from ”good friend” Alex Perry and that his suit was Louis Vuitton.
Clarke’s teammate, David Warner, and Shane Warne’s fiancee, Elizabeth Hurley, were among those congratulating the couple online.
The Emirates-owned, six-star Wolgan Valley resort where the couple wed is one of the state’s most exclusive retreats, charging more than $1500 a night for a suite.
Australian magazines would have been enthusiastic to defray the wedding costs, with exclusive rights to a celebrity wedding of this calibre believed to be worth more than $100,000.
The editor of Woman’s Day, Fiona Connolly, said her readers would be very interested in the marriage.
”Michael Clarke’s wedding is a great story for women’s magazines because people have been interested in his romantic life for years,” she said. ”He’s young and very appealing to our market.”
Clarke and Boldy won immediate praise for eschewing the dollars. ”No deals, no media, no $$$’s, just family and class,” tweeted one fan.
Both husband, 31, and wife, 30, have websites listing their key statistics. He has played 83 Tests, scoring 6097 runs at an average of 48.78. She has a 34B bust, brown/green eyes and wears size 7½ shoes.
Clarke’s next official engagement is not until mid-June when he is expected to front a press conference before he flies to England with the Australian one-day side.
A Cricket Australia spokesman, Peter Young, had no knowledge of the nuptials. ”That’s his private business. You will find that everybody at Cricket Australia is absolutely delighted. They’re a top couple,” he said.
Boldy has been engaged, according to her website, as a presenter on the Weather Channel and the shopping network TVSN on Foxtel. She will be welcome to extend any honeymoon to the England tour.
”The long-standing CA policy is to encourage players and partners to have as much time as possible together in these days of constant travel,” Mr Young said.