Australia and Proteas batting brittle - Harris


Smith, meanwhile is looking for revenge against South Africa and is aiming to continue the trend which has seen the tourists dominate in recent series between the sides.

"I'm one of the ones who hasn't played any red-ball cricket here", he said. That century, the fourth of his 23 test centuries, was the breakthrough. But the damage caused by Cummins, Starc and Hazlewood in Australia's Ashes rout of England has South Africa thinking again and possibly seeking slower surfaces for this series.

But South Africa's pace attack is not too far behind either.

"I didn't think they'd have a great deal of pace", he said.

Hazlewood admitted that his side had failed to perform well overseas in the last couple of years, however, adding that they would try to perform to their level best and come back with the trophy.

With that in mind, Australia have issued a request to the local broadcaster and match officials to keep the sound turned down during the first Test.

Australia have spinner Nathan Lyon who took 21 wickets in the 4-0 thumping of England in the Ashes. I don't think we've been beaten here in quite some time so a good opportunity for the guys.

"Everybody knows what happened at the Wanderers, so we've left the groundsmen to prepare the best possible pitches that they can", coach Ottis Gibson said last week.

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"You need to hold Australia, find a way to take the game deep, then you start to create doubt in the Australian line-up", the former Proteas skipper told Independent Media.

CSA acting CEO Thabang Moroe lauded Morkel's contribution to South African cricket.

There are few rivalries in sport that compare with the white-knuckle intensity of rugby Tests between the New Zealand All Blacks and South Africa's Springboks.

Australian paceman Mitchell Starc has declared himself fit and raring to go for the upcoming Test series against South Africa, with the brief break after the Australian summer allowing his bruised heel to recover.

Four years ago, Australia clinched the three-Test series by a 2-1 margin, winning the first and third Tests at Centurion and Cape Town, respectively. The results may suggest that the teams have similar approaches, and are therefore adept in each other's conditions. As a batting group we know we have to make bigger runs than we did when we played them last time (2016).

Thabang Moroe, Cricket South Africa's acting CEO, said Morkel had formed part of the golden era of fast bowlers that made the South Africa Test team a champion outfit that was respected throughout the world.

South Africa are set to welcome back Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock - the star trio missing recent limited-over commitments due to injury - but batsman Temba Bavuma is likely to miss out with a hand problem.

The first Test between South Africa and Australia will be played in Durban on Thursday.