Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
In his first interview since being banned for life by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for match-fixing, disgraced New Zealand batsman Lou Vincent revealed that he was coerced into the illegal trade by his “hero”.
“This guy…he’s my hero,” Vincent told Newstalk ZB and Radio Sport. “Someone that almost took me under his wing, someone who was a dear friend, someone that when I was around, I was so empowered by his presence and his confidence, the aura of this legend that I had the honour of playing cricket with in my career, and now it is ‘Yes, sir’.”
Vincent also recalled how he found out that his “hero” was involved in match-fixing.
He also spoke about how he was approached during the Indian Cricket League (ICL) in 2008 and was offered US$15,000.
“Then I go to my hero, knock on his door and then I am buzzing with this like, ‘Wow, this has really happened, I have to tell someone the story’,” he said. “I walk into the room and I just had to tell him straight away. ‘This is what happened, I have been approached, this is what I have done, I have reported it to my agent, it’s all being taken care of.’ And there was an eerie silence for a couple of seconds, and then there’s that deep breath and I always remember the face looking over me saying,’That’s good, because that’s a good cover, because now you are working for me’. And that’s when my life changed.”
The former New Zealand batsman stated that he is still in shock at what happened that day and added that he no longer looks up to or idolises his “hero”.
“We were friends, he’s not my friend any more and he’s certainly not my hero any more,” Vincent said.