Centurion - Australia's mix of seam and spin bowling flummoxed South Africa as they limped to 128 for seven in the third and final T20 international at SuperSport Park, in Centurion, on Friday.
Left-arm paceman Mitchell Starc immediately backed up Australia's decision to field first as he bowled a maiden over first up and struck Quinton de Kock in the throat, before trapping Hashim Amla lbw for two in his second over.
Starc returned later to bowl Albie Morkel, who had briefly thrilled his home crowd with two sixes in his 18, with a brilliant yorker and was Australia's most impressive bowler with an outstanding two for 16 in his four overs.
Spinners Glenn Maxwell and Brad Hogg were Australia's other most successful bowlers with two wickets apiece.
De Kock was the one South African batsman to show some quality on a slow pitch as he scored 41 off 40 balls before wrist-spinner Hogg ripped a delivery across him to have the left-hander caught behind.
South Africa, who leave on Saturday for the ICC World T20, will be concerned by their poor batting display, especially the quantity of balls hit straight to fielders.
Faf du Plessis (5), JP Duminy (13), AB de Villiers (11) and David Miller (2) were all dismissed in soft fashion as they stupidly picked out fielders with lofted strokes.
Tailenders Wayne Parnell (17 not out) and Beuran Hendricks (12 not out) spared some of the home team's blushes as they added 25 for the eighth wicket in the last three-and-a-half overs.