McCullum: Cairns told me about match-fixing

"I was scared to come forward"

“I was scared to come forward”

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum has revealed that Chris Cairns told him about the ins and outs of match-fixing.

McCullum told Southwark Crown Court that Cairns first introduced him to the world of match-fixing when he was playing for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL) in April 2008.

McCullum said that Cairns invited him to his hotel room to discuss a “business proposition” while he was at a bar with former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting.

However, upon meeting Cairns and hearing him speak about match-fixing, McCullum admitted that “it was a different proposition to what I expected” and added that he could not believe that “a friend I looked up to and someone I trust” was involved in the illegal trade.

McCullum claimed that Cairns had even used paper to draw out “quite thorough” descriptions of how match-fixing worked.

When asked by prosecutor Sasha Wass QC if this was a “legitimate” way for the sport to be played, McCullum said: “No, it was not an honest game of cricket.”

Upon being asked about his reaction to the “business proposition”, McCullum told the court: “I was shocked. I sort of thought he may have been joking but I quickly became aware that he was not joking. He said that everybody is doing it, all the big boys are doing it. Will you take it on?

“I wish I had said no straight away. I could not comprehend that Chris would put me in a position which would risk my future in the game.”

McCullum also admitted that he was hesitant to report Cairns initially as the former all-rounder was someone he admired and trusted.

“I was scared to come forward and say that someone I admired in New Zealand had asked me to come forward to match fix,” McCullum said.

The case continues.

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