Former Australian bowler Mitchell Johnson in action in 2015.
Former Australian bowler Mitchell Johnson in action in 2015. RICHARD WAINWRIGHT

Batsmen need more patience, says Johnson

CRICKET: Retired Australian great Mitchell Johnson says the current Test batters need to rein in their attacking tendencies if Steve Smith's side is to bounce back from the 177-run defeat to South Africa in the first Test in Perth.

Johnson, who took 313 wickets and scored 2065 runs in 73 Tests before retiring in 2015, said there was not too much wrong with the Aussies' bowling attack but there was work needed on the batting ahead of the second Test in Hobart starting on Saturday.

"I think the bowling generally has been fine,” Johnson said.

"But I think the batters have to show something different.

"I know Australia plays that aggressive brand of cricket but I think the batters need to be a little bit more patient and grind it out a little bit more.

"They obviously had a really good opportunity in that first innings because they were 0-150 but they blew that chance.”

Johnson said the team had lost some experience in the past couple of years but needed to keep the faith.

"They're obviously copping a bit of grief,” he said.

"They just need to keep backing themselves and believing in themselves.

"It will be a tough little period but they all need to show a little bit of patience.”

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