Kournikova and Bure wedding may be off

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The Independent Online

The marriage plans of hockey's Pavel Bure and tennis star Anna Kournikova, two of Russia's biggest sports celebrities, may be off, a Russian newspaper reported on Wednesday.

"A wedding isn't entering into my plans just yet," Bure, a star for the National Hockey League's Florida Panthers, was quoted as saying by Komsomolskaya Pravda. "Today I love hockey more than anything else."

Kournikova, however, on Wednesday denied there ever was an engagement.

"I never said I was engaged or was planning to get married, because I have no such plans," Kournikova said in a statement posted on her Web site, www.kournikova.com. "It is hard for me to understand that some people believe everything they see in the media, and I should have said something sooner."

Bure reportedly proposed to Kournikova at a restaurant in Florida, where the two live. A photographer snapped the two at their table, and a $1 million diamond ring was said to be involved.

The report was especially big in Russia, where even the most staid newspapers splashed it across their front pages. One said the event would be a marriage between Russia's "first bride" and "first groom," even though the two left their homeland long ago for the United States.

Kournikova, 18, is the world's 10th-ranked tennis player but has yet to win a tournament on the WTA tour. Still, her beauty has made her one of the game's most popular players.

Bure, 28, is the NHL's leading scorer with 57 goals.