Dale Steyn celebrates the wicket of Steven Smith in their previous series in 2014    Getty Images
Dale Steyn celebrates the wicket of Steven Smith in their previous series in 2014 Getty Images

Australia and South Africa are already at war of words with each other ahead of the first Test to begin on Thursday at W.A.C.A Stadium in Perth. Few days back, Dale Steyn had targeted Steven Smith few days back with his statement that if one cuts the head of the snake, rest of the body collapses. He also added that he intended to target the skipper, that can cause chaos and sometimes it does affect the rest of the guys. So Smith provided fitting response to Steyn s jibe ahead of the first Test. Smith was thrilled to be targeted on his back this summer and also hopes South Africa embrace the snake theory of Australia s batting-order as curated by Steyn. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Australia vs South Africa, 1st Test at WACA, Perth

Steyn mentioned how he intentionally targeted Smith in the 3-Test series starting on Thursday. Speaking to cricket.com.au, Smith said, If you can cut off the head of the snake, the rest of the body tends to fall … he is the leader and if we can cause a bit of chaos there, sometimes it does affect the rest. Deputy David Warner felt it was the usual fast bowler talk on Tuesday. Smith added, We’ve got a lot of batters in our line-up that are capable of scoring big runs. They can think that way if they like. Hopefully they get rid of me and just start to think the rest is going to happen. That’d be nice – and hopefully our guys can cash in … but yeah, interesting theory.

Shaun Marsh, Usman Khawaja and Adam Voges have been at their best in the past their respective centuries. This time around they also have Mitchell Marsh and wicketkeeper Peter Nevill around to boost their batting line-up. Smith has confirmed Mitchell Marsh will bat at No. 6 above Peter Nevill, despite conjecture there could be switch in the batting order. ALSO READ: Siddle returns to Australia XI for 1st Test against SA

On Mitchell Marsh coming and batting at No.6, Smith answered, The selectors have said they want Mitch Marsh to come out and score more runs, but I have watched him pretty closely over the last six months and I think he’s made a lot of improvement to his game. We’ve been working on him playing the ball a bit softer in defence, I know if he spends a lot of time in the middle he can score incredibly quickly. He hits the ball as hard as anyone, so it is about making sure he is out there long enough to score big runs. Smith feels Australia s major problems have lied on middle-order collapses overseas, In Australia over the last couple of years, everyone’s contributed with the bat. That is one thing we have done well.