Perth - South Africa were dismissed for 225 in their first innings after winning the toss on the opening day of the third and final Test against Australia at the WACA Ground on Friday.
It was second Adelaide Test hero Faf du Plessis who again led the fightback, making an unbeaten 78, for a total of 266 runs in his first two Tests with just one dismissal.
He received support from Robin Peterson (31) and Vernon Philander (30) after Australia's revamped pace attack rocked the Proteas' top order.
Spinner Nathan Lyon took three for 41 off 12 overs, but it was the Australian fast bowling quartet of Mitchell Johnson (2-54), Mitchell Starc (2-55), Shane Watson (1-22) and John Hastings (1-51) that did the damage.
None of the pace foursome played in the drawn second Test in Adelaide.
Clarke (captain), Shane Watson, David Warner, Ed Cowan, Ricky Ponting,
Mike Hussey, Matthew Wade, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc, John Hastings,
Graeme Smith (captain), Alviro
Petersen, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, AB de Villiers, Faf du Plessis,
Dean Elgar, Vernon Philander, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Robin Peterson