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Smith backs KP's claims of bullying

Graeme Smith says that he’s following the fallout from the Kevin Pietersen autobiography with interest.

FILE:Graeme Smith says that he’s following the fallout from Kevin Pietersen autobiography with interest. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Graeme Smith has told EWN Sport that claims of a bullying culture within the England team by Kevin Pietersen is something that he can "truly believe,".

Smith, speaking ahead of the Cricket Sixes Invitational next week, says that while he captained the Proteas it was something that they looked to exploit.

Pietersen is set to play in the Cricket Sixes tournament, which Smith co-founded.

The former Proteas skipper says he's following the fallout from Pietersen's autobiography with interest.

"I saw a headline yesterday saying that it's the most exciting thing to happen in English cricket in the last two years. I think that there'll be so many differing opinions on this and I think KP has always been an explosive cricketer and an explosive personality, and I think he feels like he is getting his point across.

"Certain aspects of what he [Pietersen] says I can truly believe. You know the bullying stuff, I see Ricky [Ponting] has also come out and said it; when you play against England you always knew that if you could get a few steps ahead of them that they would start turning on each other, that the egos would start to play a role, certainly on the bowling front, it was always a tactic of ours, also."

Smith says that while the claims of bullying are not a surprise he doesn't know too much about the other issues in the book.

"It doesn't surprise me that but the other stuff is so hard to comment on, you're never really in and behind the scenes with that stuff.

"I always loved beating England and I think every South African is probably enjoying the turmoil that they're going through at the moment."