Former New Zealand test cricketer Daryl Tuffey has broken his silence on the match-fixing saga, issuing a strong denial of any involvement in cricket fixing.
Tuffey, who was named in December along with former teammates Chris Cairns and Lou Vincent as being investigated by International Cricket Council anti-corruption (ACSU) officials, issued a statement today proclaiming his innocence.
It comes a day after explosive testimony to the ACSU by Vincent's ex-wife, Elly Riley, was leaked. Her statement to investigators pointed the finger at Cairns as a match-fixing ringleader, first in the Indian Cricket League in 2008. Cairns maintains his innocence.
''Mr Tuffey is aware of media reports of the content of testimony given to the International Cricket Council by the former wife of Lou Vincent, Eleanor Riley,'' Tuffey's, statement, issued through his lawyers, said.
''Mr Tuffey has not seen a copy of Ms Riley's account but has been asked by the media to comment on allegations that he was involved in or financially benefited from match-fixing or spot-betting. These allegations are regarded by Mr Tuffey as the most serious kind and are unequivocally denied by him.''
Tuffey said he was yet to be presented with ''a single scintilla of evidence'' to substantiate these claims.
''Mr Tuffey is naturally frustrated by the unsubstantiated attacks on his good name levelled by a few self-interested individuals. He does, however, remain committed to continued co-operation with the authorities regarding this matter and is confident that he will ultimately be cleared of any wrong-doing.
''Finally, Mr Tuffey will take whatever steps are necessary to protect his reputation and will not hesitate to take legal action against those responsible for the publication of any false and defamatory material concerning him.''
Should bouncers be banned from cricket?