London: Media baron Rupert Murdoch’s wife Wendi Deng has won many admirers among Chinese netizens after she slapped down the man who was throwing foam pie at her husband while facing British MPs over the phone-hacking scandal Tuesday.
Bloggers have praised Wendi for boosting the image of Chinese wives by slapping down the attacker.
She has been hailed as a new national role model in China as images of her leaping to the defence of Rupert Murdoch sizzle across internet, the Guardian reported.
Wendi’s agile slapdown of the British comedian was the top story on Sina and other leading new portals.
Commentators celebrated her vitality, while state news agencies tried to widen the discomfort of the press baron to the entire western media.
Wendi was praised as a “tiger woman” and “Charlie’s Angel”.
A post on the Weibo microblog by Toubenxingfu111 read “The image of Chinese women just got a lift”.
“This adds value to the image of Chinese wives,” said another under the name Jihua.
“They have previously proved their ability to cook and run a business. Now they can add bodyguard.”
Wendi was born in 1968 in Xuzhou, Jiangsu province.
Wendi joined Star TV, part of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, as an intern in 1996. Reports on how she met Murdoch vary. One version has it that they were introduced at a party in 1998; another that she worked as his interpreter in Shanghai and Beijing. Rupert divorced his wife, Anna, a year later.
Wendi translates for her husband and acts as an intermediary or representative for many of his businesses on the Chinese mainland.
The couple were reported to have bought a house in Beijing in 2004 for 30m yuan (2.9 mn pounds or $4.6 mn).
Though Wendi is admired for her looks, her language skills and a spectacular social climb from a modest home, she is sometimes derided as a family wrecker and gold-digger.
That view is being revised. “I never used to like Wendi because I thought she was too materialistic, but I like her now,” said a blogger under the name Jixunli.