Du Plessis demands Proteas improvements

Faf du Plessis acknowledged South Africa were second best in the first Test with Australia, something he hopes to correct in Port Elizabeth.

South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis   -  Getty Images

South Africa have to be better in all aspects of Test match cricket if they are to get back into the four-match series with Australia, says Faf du Plessis.

A disappointing fourth day of the first Test at Kingsmead left the Proteas facing defeat heading into Monday, Australia having reduced them to 293-9 in pursuit of 417.

It took less than four overs for the tourists to wrap up victory by 188 runs when play resumed as Josh Hazlewood trapped Quinton de Kock lbw for 83.

De Kock's dismissal wrapped up a disappointing Test for Du Plessis' men after being bowled out for 162 in their first knock, and failing to take advantage when Australia were five down for less than 200 in both of their innings.

"I don't think the team needs more motivation to beat Australia," said Du Plessis.

"It is a nice opportunity for us to learn from the mistakes that we made, and also stand up and compete against Australia.

"There was a real difference in skill with the reverse-swing. Every time KG [Kagiso Rabada] had the ball in his hand, it looked like he could take a wicket, and the same goes for Mitchell Starc.

"The guys need to find a way to get rid of the tail quicker. We mentioned it before the series, and I think a crucial part of the series will be the runs scored between numbers eight and 11.

"We know, as a top seven, that the responsibility [to score runs] lies on us, because for us it is a bit easier."

The second Test gets under way in Port Elizabeth on Friday.

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