The Proteas suffered a 111-run defeat in the first T20I against Australia on Wednesday.
New captain Mitchell Marsh clubbed a T20I career-best 92* off 49 balls as Australia piled up 226-6 after being sent in at Kingsmead.
Opening batsman Reeza Hendricks hit 56 for South Africa but the hosts were bowled out for 115.
Debutant leg-spinner Tanveer Sangha took 4-31 after receiving a late call-up when Adam Zampa fell ill.
“He’s a fantastic young talent,” said Marsh.
Both sides were missing several key players.
Australia went on an all-out attack, with Marsh slamming 20 runs off the second over, bowled by Lungi Ngidi.
Australia go big in the Powerplay as they hit the Proteas attack for 70 runs.
— SuperSport 🏆 (@SuperSportTV) August 30, 2023
New cap Matt Short (20) and Tim David (64) shared stands of 63 off 26 balls for the second wicket and 97 off 50 deliveries for the fifth wicket with Marsh.
“I thought Tim was fantastic. It was a really good partnership,” said Marsh.
There were 11 sixes in the Australian innings, with both Marsh and David hitting the ball out of the ground and into a road over Kingsmead’s old main stand on the leg side.
The Australian onslaught meant that the Proteas needed to mount a record second-innings chase. It never looked likely after Marcus Stoinis bowled Temba Bavuma in a first over which cost only one run.
“It’s been an interval since we last played and it showed tonight,” said Proteas captain Aiden Markram.
The next two T20Is, both to be played again in Durban, take place on Friday and Sunday.
© Agence France-Presse