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Page last updated at 18:17 GMT, Wednesday, 8 September 2010 19:17 UK

England coach Andy Flower opposes Twitter ban

Kevin Pietersen (left) and Andy Flower
Flower (right) does not want Pietersen (left) silenced on Twitter

England coach Andy Flower says he does not want players banned from using Twitter despite Kevin Pietersen's recent run-in with the authorities.

Pietersen was fined after leaking news he had been dropped from the England one-day team before it was confirmed.

Flower said: "Ideally, we'd like to let players use Twitter if they so choose.

"I don't quite understand the attractions of it myself but if they want to do it we want to allow them to make decisions like adults."

Pietersen's comments, which also included offensive language, were just the most recent high-profile example of sportsmen and women getting into trouble over their comments on the social networking site.


Last summer Australian batsman Phil Hughes tweeted that he had been dropped for the third Ashes Test before the team had been named publicly, and footballers Jozy Altidore and Darren Bent have also been in trouble for ill-advised public comments.

Players at the Leicester Tigers rugby union club have been banned from the service altogether, and recently Australian triple-Olympic gold medal winning swimmer Stephanie Rice lost a sponsorship deal and was forced to make a public apology for an allegedly homophobic comment on Twitter.

"We want to allow the public access to our players and make them interesting to the public - because a lot of the players are very interesting people," said Flower.

"But it has to be done in the right way. If we are to give them that freedom they must act responsibly.

"If they cannot do so, we'll be forced into restricting the way they use it - and we don't want to do that."

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see also
Twitter rant costs Rice sponsor
07 Sep 10 |  Swimming
Pietersen fined for Twitter rant
06 Sep 10 |  England
Mascarenhas fined for Miller rant
06 Sep 10 |  Cricket
Altidore fined for Twitter posts
26 Oct 09 |  Hull
Roddick questions Twitter ruling
29 Aug 09 |  Tennis

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Telegraph Flower: fixing tarnished summer - 33 hrs ago
TNT Magazine > Rice cries over homophobic Tweet - 35 hrs ago
Sydney Morning Herald Twitter a trap for sport stars? - 36 hrs ago
Melbourne Age Twitter turns into anti-social networking trap for sport stars - 38 hrs ago ECB wrong to round on Twitter as Anderson and Swann tweet sweetly | Emma John - 41 hrs ago


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