Canberra: Relieved after winning a libel suit against axed IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi, who had accused him of match-fixing, former New Zealand all-rounder Chris Cairns said he feels "complete vindication".
Insisting that he was "never going to back down" against one of international cricket`s most powerful figures, Cairns told `The Canberra Times` in an interview that he had to fight the case to restore his reputation.
"I took it as far as I could go to clear my name and that`s what I had to do," Cairns told the newspaper.
"It was a long hard road to get that complete vindication. An hour won`t go past when you`re not thinking about it. It`s a massive distraction and something that didn`t need to be in my life but I had to deal with it.”
"It`ll take a good while to get out of the system and realise it`s not part of my life and I`ll have more time for all things family and professionally," he added.
Modi lost a libel case against Cairns and will have to pay 90,000 pounds (approx Rs 73 lakh) in damages to the cricketer.
Cairns, who was in the witness box for eight hours during the court case, admitted that he reacted angrily when it was revealed to him that Modi would not take the stand. "Lalit Modi and I are poles apart in life -- financially, religiously, where we live, we are the complete opposite.”
"But the one place where you are equal, regardless of whether you`re a billionaire, a cricketer, male or female, is in the witness stand. Everybody`s the same in there. We had the courage to stand up and say what we believed and Mr Modi chose not to go down that route so that was the frustrating thing," he said.
Having not played cricket over last two years, Cairns is now keen to take up a role with New Zealand cricket.