Sonny Bill Williams and Jaime Ridge split

Whirlwind celebrity romance fizzles out

Last updated 14:53 16/03/2012

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New Zealand's hottest young couple, sports star Sonny Bill Williams and socialite Jaime Ridge, have reportedly separated.

It is understood the All Black hunk went cold on his teenage girlfriend not long after winning the NZ heavyweight boxing title last month - an occasion photographed as much for the sporting spectacle as for his ringside romance.

Sources say the midfielder made all the plays for his teenage admirer during the early stages of their courtship but that recently the young stars had drifted apart.

The pair's whirlwind romance was as short-lived as one of his fights.

The 18-year-old daughter of former league star turned TV-jock Matthew Ridge and designer Sally Ridge started seeing the Bulldog-turned-All Black Williams in early January. 

The 26-year-old had parted ways with national touch rep Aleisha Berryman, 21, and Ridge had ended her several month fling with emerging hockey player Dwayne Rowsell, also, 21, whose family she'd spent Christmas with.

Williams and Ridge had been spending time between her Auckland home and Williams' Hamilton pad and had been photographed flirting and having fun in the sun at the rugged, nearby beach town of Raglan the week before his title fight.

Sources initially said they were a ''very well-matched couple'' but the eight-year age gap was never far away from debate.

Ridge will now return to her law and commerce studies at Auckland University, whlie Williams continues playing for the Chiefs in the Super Rugby competition.

The pair could not be contacted for comment.

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