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Graeme is out to strike early

Brisbane: South African captain Graeme Smith wants to keep the anniversary of Australia's humiliating capitulation for 47 fresh in the minds of the home side at the opening Test on Friday.

It will be almost 12 months to the day when the Proteas had skittled the Australians for their lowest total (against South Africa) at the Newlands to set up a crushing eight-wicket win. Smith didn’t miss the opportunity of reminding Michael Clarke’s Australia of their day of ignominy on the eve of the first the three-match Test series.

“Gary’s (Kirsten) daughter is turning one on Friday and she was born on that day as well. It’s quite easy to remember,” Smith said on Thursday.

“To reduce Australia to 21 for 9 is something that’s quite hard to fathom at present.

“Our goal is to get into the (Australian) batting order and create a lot of pressure. If we can do that first up, hopefully we can create a bit of doubt.”

Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander are key to South Africa’s hopes.

“The thing is, you can bowl at the speed of light, but the key is how effective can you be,” Smith said of Steyn.

“Dale has proven that he can be both. Hopefully he’ll show that in this game.

“Our goal is to ensure our fast bowlers expose their top order quickly.” (AFP)