Firebrand left-armer Johnson ripped the world leading South Africans apart with career-best figures in the first Test on bouncy Centurian, but when the pitch had less to give the pacemen it was Steyn who shone.
“I was nowhere near as effective as what Mitchell was,” said Steyn, who’s returned from a rib break and had a bout of gastro in the first Test.
“The guy just tore us up. He showed how devastating a fast bowler in a purple patch really can be.
“It was definitely something to try and copy. But the (Port Elizabeth) wicket obviously didn’t offer us that.
“I want to lead the attack and I want to bowl 150kms an hour.
“But you just can’t do it sometimes. You push your body too hard and end up bowling a lot slower.”
They’re subdued comments from the man who after knocking over Australia’s batsmen looked ready to rip their heads off to make sure they wouldn’t come back, particularly when he took three wickets for four runs to end the second match.
But the displays of aggression aren’t personal says Steyn, who says he readies himself for battle before a match.
“It’s a little bit embarrassing when I watch it on the news,” Steyn said.
“If I was running in and thinking of cuddly bears and stuff like that, I would be dishing out half-volleys and hamburgers for guys to smash,” Steyn said.
“So I’ve got to kind of get myself into a fight.
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