Kevin Pietersen: Matt Prior was the 'Big Cheese' who was the main cause of resentment towards me in the England dressing room

Former England cricketer lifts lid on row with former vice-captain

Click to follow

Kevin Pietersen has claimed he was "no villain" despite being made a "scapegoat" by England after the Ashes whitewash in January, according to reports.

In KP: The Autobiography, the former England batsman, 34, claims that Andy Flower wanted to build a team of "Boy Scouts who never did anything wrong on or off the field. Keen young gentlemen. Always perpetrated. They wanted us to win in a certain way."

He claims he was victimised by the then-coach because "individuality reflected badly on Flower's reputation as a leader", while stating that his "big, boisterous and annoying" personality" made him a "scapegoat" to distract from England's hammering in Australia.

Pietersen has dedicated a chapter of searing criticism to wicketkeeper Matt Prior, titled Le Grand Fromage.

Pietersen claims that Prior's run as vice-captain was one of terror in which he would scream and yell at fielders for dropped catches and errors.

The South African-born batsman consistently refers to Prior as "The Big Cheese" or "Cheese" during the book and states that the wicketkeeper was "a Dairylea triangle thinking he was Brie"; he says Prior was the main cause of resentment to him in the dressing room.

"It was a sad time," says Pietersen about how he fell out with Prior in New Zealand. "I had been friends with Cheese. Now he was slowly losing any sense of himself as he turned up the volume and made himself the main man of the dressing room."

Pietersen told psychologist Mark Bawden in a one-on-one meeting organised by Andy Flower that Prior was a "classroom bully" and he "didn't like the way he spoke about people behind their backs. How he belittled younger players."

Prior, it is claimed, was part of a dominant clique with Graeme Swann and Stuart Broad, while Jimmy Anderson "ran with them" but "wasn't in the same league" because he is "at heart the nicest bloke in the world."

Prior took to Twitter to respond to the report, saying: "Obviously sad to see the accusations against me this am and I WILL have my right of reply!

"However today is not the day and Twitter is not the place for it! Now back to my Achilles rehab and learning to walk again!"

Pietersen denies the Textgate row, which started Pietersen's downfall as an England player, claiming he never sent a text message to anyone over a row with then-captain Andrew Strauss.

He says a friend in the South African side texted him after Strauss allegedly refused to acknowledge him after he scored 149 in the second Test against the Proteas on 2012.

"It suited the ECB to use the messages as evidence of my open rebellion against Straussy."

The England and Wales Cricket Board said it was "impossible" for them to comment as they are yet to see the book.

"We have not had an opportunity to see the book yet as the publishers have declined to provide us with a copy before the official release date."