What the fuzz! Hashim’s in fashion as Proteas face off against India

2010-12-28 00:00

SOUTH AFRICAN sports fans are known for the creative lengths they go to in support of their favourite teams.

Cricket spectators attending the Test series against India have come up with another innovative idea to support one of this province’s own cricket stars.

TV cameras panning across the crowds at Kingsmead have stopped several times to highlight spectators wearing false beards imitating Durban-born Dolphins player Hashim Amla, who is Muslim and sports a full beard. According to Witness cricket reporter Lungani Zama, beards like these first appeared at the first Test at Centurion in Pretoria.

“It’s a light-hearted display of support for Amla, who is playing his 50th Test match, and on his own home ground too,” Zama commented.

A local Muslim leader says growing a beard is considered an important practice handed down from the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) who said: “Grow your beards and trim or clip the moustaches.”

Since then most Islamic scholars declared growing a beard obligatory for every adult Muslim male and outlawed the shaving of beards. Beards must be tidy and no longer than a fist length.

The Muslim leader said he viewed the actions of cricket fans as a show of solidarity and support for Amla, but conceded that “very conservative Muslims may see it in a different light”.

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