David Warner and Aaron Finch launched a brutal assault on the South African bowlers as Australia piled up 193 for five in the decisive third Twenty20 international at Newlands on Wednesday.
With the series locked at 1-1, Australian captain Finch said he was happy to bat first after South Africa won the toss and sent the tourists in.
He showed why as he and the left-handed Warner thrashed 75 runs off the six-over power play on the way to an opening partnership of 120 off 74 balls. Warner hit 57 and Finch 55. Both faced 37 balls.
Both batsmen were out in successive overs and South Africa did a reasonable job of pulling the scoring rate back on a dry pitch.
But a no-ball which reprieved former captain Steve Smith proved expensive. Smith was bowled by Kagiso Rabada at the start of the 19th over but replays showed Rabada had over-stepped.
Smith took advantage by hitting 20 runs off the last over bowled by Anrich Nortje, including two sixes, to finish on 30 not out.
It was the first time Warner and Smith had played at Newlands since both were banned for a year after a ball-tampering scandal at the same ground two years ago.
But in the general hubbub of a hectic 20-overs game neither player appeared to be targeted by a capacity crowd.