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Aussies ready to unleash Test sledging

AAP logoAAP 31/10/2016 Justin Chadwick

Australian spinner Nathan Lyon insists his team are ready to go toe-to-toe with South Africa in the sledging department during the upcoming three-Test series.

Australia are considered to be the masters of sledging in world cricket.

Injured South African star AB de Villiers even described the 2014 Test series against Australia as featuring some of the worst sledging he had ever encountered.

Australia have toned down their approach somewhat since Steve Smith took over as captain last year.

But Lyon has warned there'll be plenty of fire if the situation warrants it during the upcoming series against South Africa, starting at the WACA Ground on Thursday.

"We're going to play the Australian way. We're going to compete hard. We're not going to roll over," Lyon said.

"If one of our players is getting a hard time, we're going to stick up for him.

"We know where the line is. We headbutt it, but we don't go over it.

"If one of our players is down and we need to look after him, we'll do that. It's just the Australian way."

South Africa started the mind games over the weekend when pace spearhead Dale Steyn declared his team would be targeting Smith during the series.

As Steyn put it: "If you can cut off the head of a snake, the rest of the body tends to fail".

That comment didn't go unnoticed by the Australian team.

"They can talk about whatever they want. We'll come out here and play hard," Lyon said.

"What we say here isn't going to have an affect on the game."

Australia hit back by saying the Proteas' batting line-up was inexperienced and vulnerable.

Lyon said he'll enter the series full of confidence after snaring 4-10 from 10 overs to guide NSW to victory in the one-day final against Queensland earlier this month.

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