Kevin Pietersen fined over Twitter comments about Sky television commentator Nick Knight


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The Independent Online

England batsman Kevin Pietersen has been fined for comments made on Twitter about Sky television commentator Nick Knight.

Pietersen took to the social networking site to criticise former England opener Knight during the first Test against the West Indies at Lord's, writing "Can somebody please tell me how Nick Knight has worked his way into the commentary box for the Tests?? Ridiculous."

The England and Wales Cricket Board held a disciplinary hearing yesterday, with managing director Hugh Morris and team director Andy Flower present, and opted to impose an undisclosed fine on Pietersen, part suspended for 12 months.

A statement released by the ECB last night confirmed: "Kevin Pietersen today attended a disciplinary hearing convened by Hugh Morris, managing director of England cricket and Andy Flower, England team director.

"The hearing considered recent comments made by Pietersen on Twitter to be prejudicial to the interests of the ECB and a breach of the England player conditions of employment in relation to clauses regarding public statements.

"Pietersen has been fined an undisclosed sum, part of which has been suspended for 12 months, in accordance with the terms and conditions of his England central contract."

Morris, in particular, is wary of Twitter and the England players who use it, once describing it to "like giving a machine gun to a monkey".

Pietersen's comments about Knight are particularly sensitive due to the huge commercial partnership between the ECB and Sky.

He has previously landed himself in hot water via his Twitter account after announcing his dropping from a one-day squad on the site.

Prior to Pietersen's punishment, England opener Alastair Cook had attempted to downplay the controversy.

Asked about Pietersen's comments Cook, a non-tweeter, said: "I'm not really on Twitter so I didn't really see it until yesterday.

"It's not anything to do with me. It certainly won't distract us as a side. It just shows in the modern world how everything's always accessible.

"It always does get blown out of proportion, let's be honest. We always turn the volume down in the dressing room. I'm more worried about that red ball coming down at me than I am about what people are saying about it (on television)."