NZ’s Cairns maintains fixing innocence

Former New Zealand cricketer Chris Cairns has again maintained he has not been involved in spot-fixing, saying he is not the player named in evidence to the International Cricket Council (ICC).


Chris_CairnsCairns has released a written statement, denying he is player X, identified to the ICC’s anti-corruption unit in testimony from former Black Caps teammates Lou Vincent and Brendon McCullum.

In that leaked testimony, published by British newspapers, Vincent says player X lured him into getting involved in fixing across several countries.

McCullum said he rebuffed two approaches by the same player, who he described as a “hero”, to fix games.

Former allrounder Cairns, whose name was first publicly linked with the worldwide investigation in December, issued a short email on Tuesday reiterating he was not the player concerned.

He is frustrated to have had just one uncompleted interview with the UK’s Metropolitan Police in New Zealand in which to state his case.

“I just ask people to remember that, as yet, the ICC have still not so much as interviewed me and that what is circulating in the public domain is barely one side of the story.

“I think it is very dangerous to try to do this through the media and court of public opinion, where it is impossible to present all the information and facts. I will work through the proper channels to, once again, prove my innocence.”

Cairns says he has asked ICC investigators to produce copies of Vincent’s and McCullum’s statements so he can respond.

“They decline to do so but seem happy to leak information to the media which they deny to me.”

Cairns says he had no connection to many of the games which Vincent has testified as involving fixing.

“He (Vincent) is in a desperate position. He faces potential prosecution and, in trying to negotiate a plea bargain, he appears to be willing to falsely accuse me of wrongdoing.”

Cairns says he has already been to court once to defend himself against match-fixing allegations and is prepared to do so again.

Two years ago, he won a British High Court libel case against Indian Premier League founder Lalit Modi over a Twitter message in 2010 and a subsequent website report that he had fixed matches in the now-defunct Indian Cricket League.

Despite that outcome, he says his reputation is still being sullied.

“I acknowledge that, recently, I have upset some powerful people in the world of cricket, including raising my own concerns about the health of the game. I believe I am paying the price for that now,” he said.

“I believe there are dark forces at play. These forces have long arms, deep pockets and great influence.”

New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White on Monday said he knew the identity of player X but couldn’t confirm it at the risk of jeopardising the ICC investigation.

White was disappointed McCullum’s testimony was leaked and confirmed the New Zealand captain was not under investigation.