Du Plessis seeks Graeme Smith advice ahead of WACA Test


Faf du Plessis will lead out South Africa at the WACA on Thursday having sought the advice of the only Proteas captain to win a Test series in Australia.

On the eve of the first Test against Australia in Perth, Du Plessis revealed he would speak to Graeme Smith, who skippered South Africa in a record 109 five-day matches.

However, Du Plessis also made it clear he views the upcoming three-Test series as the start of a "new journey" for his team, as they seek to take steps towards regaining the number-one ranking they previously held.

"We don't want to be that team of the past, we have our own goals that we want to achieve," said the 32-year-old middle-order batsman.

"I think that was one of the most important things we needed to change as a team. For a year we were playing in the shadow of the team that used to be number one and with a lot of personalities missing it was difficult to do that."

On his discussion with Smith, Du Plessis added: "I'm supposed to speak to Graeme a bit later, just to try to get some ideas of how he did things when he was over here because he was a very successful captain. I'm looking forward to that conversation.

"The most important thing for me as a leader is to put your ego aside and try and ask and learn as much as you can because there's a lot of valuable information out there.

"I'm extremely grateful that I have been put in a situation where I have been given the Test team when I am slightly older, a bit more mature and understand myself as a leader a bit better."

The meeting between Australia and South Africa in Perth will be followed by further Tests in Hobart and Adelaide later this month.