‘Wagatha Christie’ trial: Rebekah Vardy tells libel battle claims she was The Sun’s Secret WAG are ‘fantasy’

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Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of Coleen Rooney's barrister David Sherborne (centre back) questioning Rebekah Vardy (left) on Thursday  (PA)
Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of Coleen Rooney's barrister David Sherborne (centre back) questioning Rebekah Vardy (left) on Thursday (PA)

Rebekah Vardy dismissed as “fantasy” claims that she was The Sun’s ‘Secret Wag’ as she branded the gossip column “absolute garbage”.

Vardy, 40, faces claims she fuelled the short-lived column in 2019, dishing the dirt on footballers under the veil of anonymity.

The High Court was shown a series of extracts from the column, mentioning teammates of her husband Jamie Vardy, their wives and girlfriends, as well as unnamed players from the Midlands.

“This is ridiculous”, exclaimed Vardy, when it was suggested goalkeeper Jordan Pickford’s wife was part of “her circle”.

“My circle would have been people I socialise with and have regular contact with”, she said.

“Some of these people I’ve never met.”

One of the ‘Secret Wag’ columns was about an unnamed footballer who was accused of cheating on his wife, but a planned tryst with another woman was thwarted when he removed his shirt to reveal a tattoo of his marriage vows.

“If you believe everything of what’s written here, it’s crazy”, said Vardy, giving evidence at the High CourtWagatha Christie’ libel battle. “It’s a rehash of stuff in the public domain, gossip.

Rebekah Vardy arrives at the Royal Courts Of Justice on Thursday (PA)
Rebekah Vardy arrives at the Royal Courts Of Justice on Thursday (PA)

“I’ve never been to Las Vegas”, she said of a tale from the Nevada destination. “It is not the sort of place I would want to go to either.”

Asked to comment on the source of the story, Vardy exclaimed: “How would I know?

“It’s absolute nonsense, it’s garbage.”

Vardy and Coleen Rooney, 36, are fighting each other in a High Court libel trial, over Rooney’s public “Wagatha Christie” post accusing her fellow WAG of being the leak.

Vardy engaged in a bizarre exchange with Rooney’s barrister David Sherborne, when he suggested there could be a link between a Secret Wag story about an unnamed player from the Midlands and Vardy’s husband playing for Leicester FC.

“Leicester is in the West Midlands, isn’t it?”, he said.

“It’s Leicester”, retorted Vardy. “That’s speculation.”

Mr Sherborne replied: “I think it’s a question of geography, isn’t it?”, and Vardy replied: “It’s in the Midlands, yes.”

Mr Sherborne suggested: “You were providing information to the Secret Wag column”.

“No, that’s absolutely nothing but fantasy”, says Vardy.

Coleen and Wayne Rooney arriving at court (PA Wire)
Coleen and Wayne Rooney arriving at court (PA Wire)

Earlier on her third day of evidence, Vardy accepted she knew her agent was leaking information on Rooney to The Sun newspaper.

The ‘WAG’ was privately messaging agent Caroline Watt about a February 2019 private Instagram post by Rooney, in which she had revealed damage to a car.

When a story appeared in The Sun and Rooney suspected a friend of leaking to the media, Ms Watt privately told Vardy “it was me”.

Vardy told the High Court on Thursday she believed Ms Watt was only passing on information which The Sun already knew, and had not challenged the agent about her activities because she was distracted by Gemma Collins falling over on Dancing on Ice.

It was also revealed that Vardy suggested to Rooney directly that her Instagram account may have been hacked by the newspaper, and was accused by Rooney’s barrister of trying to “throw her off the scent”.

Rooney first made her suspicions public about a leak in February 2019, after a story had appeared in The Sun about damage to a car she was driving in Washington DC.

The High Court heard Vardy contacted her fellow WAG, telling her: “This is so bad and The Sun of all people as well.”

Asking if she had scoured her followers for signs of a leak, Vardy said: “What about being hacked?” and later added: “You don’t think the paper has been hacking your account?”.

Mr Sherborne told Vardy: “That’s totally disingenuous, isn’t it?”

He accused Vardy of “reaching out” when she “realised you are a suspect”.

“You knew perfectly well you have been responsible through Ms Watt for passing information to The Sun”, he said.

“You are presenting yourself as someone who hates The Sun, someone coming up with excuses, maybe hacking, suggesting someone with celeb links – you are throwing her off the scent.”

“No”, replied Vardy, who added: “I knew she didn’t like The Sun.”

On the car crash story, Vardy and Ms Watt had exchanged messages about Rooney’s Instagram post which showed detail of the damaged car.

Vardy replied “she defo did” when the agent suggested Sun journalist Andy Halls was looking for confirmation that Vardy was driving at the time.

Vardy confirmed in her evidence that she was involved in leaking information, but insisted she “didn’t think (Ms Watt) was passing on any new information. The information she had was what they already had heard.”

‘Wagatha Christie’ libel battle between Rebekah Vardy and Coleen Rooney Wagatha Christie’ at the Royal Courts Of Justice, London

After the story was published, Rooney took to her public Instagram to correct it: “Thank you for the messages asking if I am ok… the car crash story was completely wrong…. I wasn’t involved in a crash …the car was damaged by another car.

“Someone on my private Instagram seen the picture and is telling or selling stories to a certain newspaper.”

Afterwards, Ms Watt and Vardy discuss the correction, and the agent makes the comment: “It wasn’t someone she trusted. It was me.”

Asked why she did not challenge her agent’s statement, Vardy said she had been distracted by TV programme Dancing on Ice and was bathing her children.

“I have seen the conversation that follows, and without wanting to make fun of anyone, it was Dancing on Ice and Gemma Collins face-planting on the ice which was the next message.

“That was what I had on when I was bathing the children.”

Vardy was questioned on Thursday on her alleged habit of staging paparazzi images, but denied claims that she had orchestrated a WAGs image when they dined out in St Petersburg during the 2018 World Cup.

Mr Sherborne accused her of “selective amnesia” when Vardy could not remember having Sun journalist Andy Halls’ phone number.

And she insisted she had not leaked the car crash story to him at the 2019 National Television Awards.

“You and her had been telling Mr Halls about this at the NTAs when he was popping in and out”, said Mr Sherborne.

Vardy replied: “It was openly being discussed by lots of individuals”, saying Rooney’s post was not a secret. “Lots of people saw that.”

She said Mr Halls “may have been there but I don’t remember seeing him”, prompting Mr Sherborne to pull out a social media post by Vardy – including an image of her “stuffing my face with a burger” – in which she thanks the journalist personally for the invitation.

“In the very crowded room we see, somehow you have forgotten that you actually knew perfectly well Mr Halls was there”, said the barrister.

“No”, replied Vardy, suggesting the originally invitation may have come from Mr Halls “but I’m not 100 per cent sure about that”.

Sherborne accused Vardy of trying to “distance herself” from the journalist and claimed she was delivering “rehearsed answers” to his questions.

Vardy’s evidence is due to conclude later on Friday.

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