While acknowledging Pietersen’s ability should have made him ‘the best England cricketer to ever walk the planet’, he didn’t disguise his approval for England’s decision to axe the South Africa-born batsman.
"I think one of the biggest things they (the ECB) want to rediscover is the value of playing cricket for England, the honour and the pride you need to show as an England cricketer," he reportedly said at a Q&A event in Dubai, having answered ‘yes it will’ to a question about whether the England dressing room would be better without KP.
"And they only want people in that dressing room that are going to be passionate about England winning and performing."
Prior, who was dropped for the final two Tests of England’s 5-0 Ashes series loss despite being vice-captain of the team, is hopeful of reclaiming his place in the XI for home series against Sri Lanka and India in the English summer.
"I have more passion now than I have ever had to get back in that England cricket team, turn things around and get back to winning ways," Prior said.
Pietersen will play in the Indian Premier League after the Delhi Daredevils' paid AUD$1.6 million for him and he has also been linked with at least two KFC T20 Big Bash League teams – the Melbourne Stars and Renegades – ahead of the competition’s fourth season in the Australian summer.
The axed England batsman hit back on Twitter, claiming Prior should focus on his own game. Pietersen may have a point - Prior was dropped after three Ashes Tests where he scored just 107 runs at 17.83 and was sloppy behind the stumps with the gloves.