Ritual shelved temporarily

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 9:06 AM ET

Obby Khan was supposed to be observing Ramadan, the Muslim observance that calls for fasting and nothing but positive thoughts during daylight hours.

Instead, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers centre was trading fists with teammate Dante Booker near the conclusion of practice yesterday at Canad Inns Stadium.

Ramadan began Sunday at sunrise, but since Khan doesn't fast the day before a game, the day of a game or the day after a game, yesterday was his first day of observing the Muslim rituals of the Lunar calendar's ninth month.

It sure didn't look like it when he and Booker were going at it and their teammates swarmed around them.

"When you're fasting you're supposed to have positive thoughts. You're not supposed to think anything bad, you're not supposed to swear and stuff like that," said Khan, who got some ribbing from several of his teammates.

"But it's the heat of the moment. When I'm on the field I don't even know I'm fasting. Things happen so fast you don't know what's happening out there.

"We pushed each other. He takes offence to me pushing him, and I take offence."

Khan felt bad for going against his religious beliefs, but he noted that football is his occupation and fights do happen.

"Yeah, I do feel bad. I do have some remorse for it, obviously for A, getting in a fight and B, swearing, but it's our job," he said. "Your job's there, and your religion's there, and you just find a happy medium."

And considering Khan had been fasting since sunrise, the bout took a lot out of him.

"Now I'm tired," he said.


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