sport

Mitch: I'm the 'intimidator'

Mitchell Johnson was delighted to continue his Ashes form during Australia's first-Test win over South Africa at Centurion.

Johnson marked his Test recall with 37 wickets in the 5-0 victory against England and followed up with match figures of 12-127 as Australia demolished the top-ranked team in the world by 281 runs inside four days at Centurion.

"When plans come off it's really nice," said the left-arm paceman after picking up his man-of-the-match award.

"I was very nervous and pumped up for this match, so to come out and do this is very good.

"I'm here to be the 'intimidator' which is what I have done here. Now we have an extra day to get back up for it."

Praise

Australia skipper Michael Clarke singled out Johnson and debutant No 3 Alex Doolan, who made 89 in the second innings and put on a 205-run stand with David Warner to take the tourists' lead out of sight, before turning his attentions to the second of three Tests which starts on Thursday in Port Elizabeth.

Clarke said: "Winning is always the best start. Credit to the bowlers and batters, Alex Doolan played an amazing innings on debut.

"We knew how tough a team South Africa were and you felt that especially as a batsman. It doesn't feel like an easy win when you are out there. You have to be on from ball one and we were.

"Mitchell is at the top of his game, he's fit and strong and his execution is perfect. Our fielding has been outstanding over the last six months, we have high expectations and it's nice to see some results.

"It's about enjoying tonight and celebrating - it's not every day you beat the No. 1 side - but we have to ready for Port Elizabeth."

Outplayed

South Africa captain Graeme Smith made no excuses for the performance and called on his players to draw on past success in order to turn things around.

"It's very disappointing," said Smith. "We've been outplayed from the word go. It's probably one of the most disappointing four days we've had as a team.

"We need to reflect, train hard and perform much better. It seemed to one of those games; bowlers picking up niggles, food poisoning.

"We allowed Australia to play front-runner cricket and that's unusual for us."