UK & World News
Kevin Pietersen Payout Over 'Bat Tamper' Ad
England cricketer Kevin Pietersen has accepted substantial libel damages over an advert which implied he might have tampered with his bat during the Ashes.
The batsman was not at London's High Court for the settlement of his action against the optician services group Specsavers over the "serious and defamatory allegation".
His solicitor, Louise Prince, told Mr Justice Tugendhat that the "Should've gone to Specsavers" advert was published on the company's Twitter account and Facebook page in August, and also appeared in various newspapers and magazines.
Accompanied by a photo of Pietersen, it contained the statement: "'Bat tampering' in the #Ashes? Apparently Hot Spot should've gone to Specsavers."
Ms Prince said the allegation of bat tampering was completely untrue and without any foundation whatsoever.
Hot Spot is an infra-red imaging system used in cricket to determine whether the ball has struck the batsman, bat or pad.
Specsavers Optical Group Ltd accepted that Pietersen did not behave in the manner suggested, apologised and had already removed the advert from circulation.
It had also agreed to pay him substantial damages and his legal costs.
The group's solicitor, Niri Shan, said it did not intend to imply that Pietersen may have tampered with his bat. It acknowledged that the allegation was untrue and apologised for the distress and embarrassment caused.
England retained the Ashes this year but a row erupted after an Australian TV channel accused players, including Pietersen, of using silicone tape on their bats to prevent edges showing up on Hot Spot.
At the time Pietersen reacted to the report by tweeting: "Horrible journalism yet again! My name brought up in Hot Spot crisis suggesting I use silicon to prevent nicks showing! Such hurtful lies."
The England and Wales Cricket Board said it would take legal action against Channel 9, and has since received an apology.