Australia in SA

Smith expects Aussie backlash

2011-11-16 20:02
Graeme Smith (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - Captain Graeme Smith says the Proteas will not take anything for granted ahead of the second Test against Australia.

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South Africa lead the two-match series 1-0, heading into the second game which starts at the Wanderers on Thursday, after securing an eight-wicket win in Cape Town last week.

"The Australians have enough players with experience to move on and we know that it's a fresh game and a fresh start," Smith on Wednesday.

The Baggy Greens were dismissed for an astonishing 47 runs in their second innings at Newlands - their worst total in over a hundred years - as the Proteas came from behind to achieve a remarkable victory.

"We need to focus on starting well and making sure that we earn that right to win again," Smith said.

"The Australians will come back hard at us because that's the way they play their cricket, and that's what makes it such an exciting series."

The Proteas hoped to build on their momentum heading into the last match of Australia's tour, enhancing their performances where possible.

"We reflected on what we did well in the first Test and it's for us to build on those things," Smith said.

"Our cricket improved from day one, especially from a bowling perspective, and we were far more accurate and consistent on day two, creating a lot more pressure.

"If we do that again, we'll give ourselves the best chance."

The Proteas are likely to take the field with the same three seamers and a spinner in their attack.

"Given the conditions here and the heat, I think the spinner will have a role to play," the skipper said.

The Proteas underwent intensive training sessions on Monday and Tuesday and were careful not to go into the Test feeling over-confident.

"We're not taking anything for granted as this is our second Test match in seven or eight months," Smith said.

"We're really motivated to perform well and we have a lot of respect for Australian players, so we're certainly not taking our foot off the gas.

"Even though it was only a two-and-a-half day Test, it was quite an emotional roller-coaster, but everyone is ready and up for it."

Since readmission, South Africa have bagged just one series victory over Australia, and that was an away series, under Smith's captaincy in the 2008/09 season.

A series win against the Baggy Greens would be the first on home soil since 1970.

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