Sonny Bill Williams has revealed why he and his wife of eight years decided to get married despite not being in love.
As revealed by Williams in his autobiography You Can't Stop The Sun From Shining, he and his wife got married just four weeks after meeting, admitting the couple were not in love when they tied the knot.
The dual-code international was renowned as a womaniser in his younger days, claiming he "was a slave to my lusts and desires" before converting to Islam, which helped turn his life around.
Williams met Alana Raffie at a retail shop she was working at in 2013, but she was initially reluctant to give the football star her phone number.
A couple of weeks later, the pair went on a chaperoned date accompanied by her cousin and cousin's husband.
"From a Westernised way of living – the way I grew up living – it's a weird concept," Williams told The Saturday Telegraph.
"Straight away we said we're going to do it Islamically correct, so even in that first four weeks I wasn't with her by myself, we always had a chaperone."
Williams and Raffie took the plunge and exchanged vows one month after meeting, hopeful love would develop over time.
They now have four children together, and the 36-year-old credits their dedication to Islam for ending his days as a womaniser.
"She grew to love my faults, I grew to love her faults, we grew to love each other's strengths," Williams said.
"I won't lie, one of the biggest tests for me was women. But the discipline I've had and my sporting career, in my life, I've been able to turn that around and strive to be authentic and be a good man, and trying to be the best husband I could be.
"Our shared faith and living for something greater than oneself is what I put it down to.
"Our life is a work in progress, me and my wife. It's not all roses, but we have moments of really good times."