• England v West Indies, 2nd Test, Trent Bridge

Strauss warns players after KP Twitter row

ESPN staff
May 24, 2012
England captain Andrew Strauss is convinced the players will have their eyes on the ball in the second Test © PA Photos

England captain Andrew Strauss has insisted the players will not be distracted by Kevin Pietersen's recent Twitter controversy when they take on West Indies in the second Test at Trent Bridge.

Not for the first time, Pietersen is established as the rascal in the England set-up, his dismissive tweet about the Sky TV commentator Nick Knight viewed as improper conduct worthy of an undisclosed fine thought to be £3,000 ($4,700) and no doubt a private rebuke. His sin, for those who have been concerned over the past day or two by weightier matters, went thus: "Can somebody PLEASE tell me how Nick Knight has worked his way into the commentary box for Home Tests?? RIDICULOUS!!"

It is the second time Pietersen has been fined for comments on Twitter after he pre-empted an official squad announcement in 2010 by revealing he had been dropped - a decision he wrote was "a f*** up".

Strauss is not a user of the social network, but has called on those who do embrace Twitter to know the boundaries.

"It's not a big distraction for us and it's not a massive issue from our point of view, but obviously we have conditions of employment that don't allow us to talk about everything and anything (in public)," he said.

"We can't criticise the ICC, we can't criticise umpires and in this case the board wasn't happy with Kevin's comments with regard to our broadcaster. That's their right as a board, so Kevin has obviously received a fine because of that.

"That's the way of the world. If you sign an England contract you can have opinions on certain things but can't say them publicly. That's the way it is and there are good reasons for that. Any employer would expect their employees to be aware of sensitive issues for them.

"You can understand that the board is concerned with making sure their sponsors and broadcasters are looked after.

"I would say we have our own informal code of conduct with regard to Twitter as a group of players. That's worked quite well for us but you are going to get the odd occasion when someone oversteps the mark and that's when the board will step in and say 'sorry mate, that's outside the boundaries and you have to pay a price for it'."

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