"I might be able to tell you more after the first Test match, but if they do, go for it, it doesn't bother me," Smith told reporters in Durban. "A bit of a verbal challenge actually makes me switch on a bit more and gets me in for the fight. So they can go for their lives."
Asked if he feels that the Proteas batsmen will also feed of the attention like he does, Smith made it clear that his focus was his team and not Faf du Plessis’.
"I don't really like to think too much about what gets them going," he said. "I prefer to think about what gets either myself or us going, and if that's getting into a contest like that, then go for it."
Australia deputy David Warner has looked in great spirit ahead of the opening Test against South Africa and that has excited off-spinner Nathan Lyon and coach Darren Lehmann.
"He's come in and he is like an Energizer bunny, it's great to see," Lyon told reporters in Durban. "He is running around with plenty of volume. We need Davey to be up and about like that. We all know he's world class, he's an x-factor. He's hitting the ball extremely well in the nets. I was just bowling to him half an hour ago and he was whacking me. It's great signs for Davey. I'm very excited to see Davey up and about – really exciting times ahead and hopefully a massive series for Davey."
Warner was the star of the show when Australia toured the Rainbow Nation in 2014 as he scored 543 runs including three centuries. Warner was named Man of the Series as Australia won 2-1. Coach Darren Lehmann wants to see Warner once again take the attack to the potent Proteas line-up.
"I think you'll find David Warner will probably take them on a bit, which would be exciting," Lehmann told cricket.com.au in Durban on Sunday.
"The guys have had a great Test series against England, so they're full of confidence and they started the tour game well. As a batting group we know we have to make bigger runs than we did when we played them last time (2016). But someone like Warner coming off, he had a great series four years ago, if he does that again that puts you on the road to big scores."
David WarnerFaf du Plessiskagiso rabadalungi ngidimorne morkelsouth africa vs australia 2018steve smithVernon Philander
First Published: March 1, 2018, 11:37 AM IST