The Pussycat Dolls have been forced to delay their reunion because of a rival group.

The 'Don't Cha' hitmakers - which included Nicole Scherzinger, Kimberly Wyatt, Ashley Roberts, Jessica Sutta and Melody Thornton - had been planning to work together again this year but things are now on hold as founder Robin Antin has created a new band called Pussycat Dolls: Next Generation.

Robin has recruited 'Do It Again' singer Pia Mia to front the new band and has been staging auditions in Los Angeles to complete the line-up.

A source told The Sun newspaper: ''Robin has really put the cat among the pigeons with this new project. Although no agreement had been reached, all of the original girls were up for reuniting and they were just figuring out how it would work.

''But then Robin put out a casting call for this new group last week and it came as a complete surprise for the girls.

''It seems like Robin decided the comeback wasn't going to happen so has gone off and done her own thing. It's a bit messy and the other girls have taken it personally.''

The original Pussycat Dolls were formed by Robin as a burlesque troupe in 1995, before being relaunched as a pop group - with another member, Carmit Bachar - a decade later.

They went on to have a string of hits before splitting in 2010, but it was revealed last year that they were planning to get back together in 2018.

A source said at the time: ''Talk of the girls ­getting back together has been rife for a few years now and they have finally found a time which works for them all.

''They are still deciding whether it will involve a full tour or just a handful of performances but they are excited to be getting out there together again...

''When they parted ways in 2009 it was only intended to be a hiatus, so it feels like the right thing to do.''

The girls were even said to be planning to head back into the recording studio so they have new material to share with fans.

The insider added: ''The girls feel the time is right to let bygones be bygones and put any differences they had behind them and celebrate the great songs they made.

''As well as their old tunes, they are hoping to treat fans with new music, too.''