Murdoch’s feud with Blair over wife Wendi: ‘Terminal’ end of friendship over claims of ‘multiple encounters’ between ex-PM and tycoon’s wife | Mail Online

This is from the Mail Online and so should be taken with a boulder of salt. However, rumours of a Deng affair were circulating before the the hacking scandal in early 2011. They have been denied by her, and all those associated.  The one point that remains entirely credible is Michael Wolff‘s below: after all, he met most the player involved while writing his biography of Murdoch. Dan Sabbagh, formerly of the Times and now writing for the Guardian, has an interesting take on the Mail splash

Claims of an affair between Mr Blair and Ms Deng swept the internet when Mr Murdoch filed for divorce in June. They were sparked by a tweet from BBC journalist Robert Peston who said: ‘Am told that undisclosed reasons for Murdoch divorcing Deng are jaw-dropping and hate myself for wanting to know what they are.’

At the time, a spokesman for Mr Blair denied he had had an affair with Ms Deng.

The friendship between Ms Deng and Mr Blair was well known long before the Murdoch marriage break up. In 2012, in an article in the Guardian newspaper, headlined ‘Tony Blair and the Murdochs: a family affair’, Murdoch’s biographer Michael Wolff described Mr Blair as ‘one of Wendi’s first official social conquests.’

Ambitious: Wendi pictured with Cherie Blair during an event to promote the Chinese version of the former PM\’s autobiography

Wolff suggested Mr Blair regarded Ms Deng as a key link in his political wooing of her husband. He wrote: ‘Blair becomes one of Wendi’s first official social conquests, in her developing role both as Murdoch social emissary and social power player. Wendi . . . is a way for Blair to see himself as having control of Murdoch, of joining with Wendi to handle him.’

Wolff said that when he wrote about Mr Murdoch in 2008, Ms Deng urged him to speak to Blair and ‘personally set up the appointment.’

In an article in the New York Times last year, friends of Ms Deng said the Murdochs were living ‘largely separate lives.’ She looked after their children while her husband focused on his business interests, it said.

Mr Blair’s place at the heart of the Murdoch dynasty appeared to be sealed at Grace’s christening in 2010 on the banks of the River Jordan, at the spot where Jesus is said to have been baptised. Mr Blair wore a white suit.

Also there were Hollywood stars Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, Queen Rania of Jordan, Donald Trump’s daughter and a photographer from Hello! magazine

via Murdoch’s feud with Blair over wife Wendi: ‘Terminal’ end of friendship over claims of ‘multiple encounters’ between ex-PM and tycoon’s wife | Mail Online.

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