England were in command early on day one, but Shaun Marsh and Peter Handscomb battled hard to revive Australia’s first innings in Adelaide.
The fixtures for the 2017-18 Ashes have been released, with the second Test in Adelaide set to host the first day-night Ashes Test.
An early collapse by the Proteas left Australia with an undemanding target of 127 to wrap up the day-night Test in Adelaide by seven wickets.
Australia went in for their tea and sandwiches needing just 100 runs, with all wickets standing, for victory over the Proteas in the third Test.
The Proteas resistance lasted just 16 overs as they were bowled out for 250 in the first session of the fourth day at Adelaide.
The Proteas will have to take heart their performance in Adelaide four years ago if they are to save the third Test against Australia.
Stephen Cook scrapped his way to 81 as he helped the Proteas to 194-6 to take a slender 70-run lead through to day four.
Australia found two breakthroughs to leave the Proteas on 100-2, trailing their opponents’ first-innings total by 24 runs.
A fifty from Mitchell Starc allowed Australia to get to 383 in the morning session on day three in Adelaide.
The Proteas have a crucial day ahead of them, as they look to clean up the tail quickly to stand any chance of pulling off a result.
Usman Khawaja’s unbeaten 138 made it Australia’s day as they go into day three on 307-6, despite a late onslaught from the Proteas’ pace attack.
A brilliant century from Usman Khawaja has taken Australia through to the final session on 209-3, trailing the Proteas by 50 runs.
Kyle Abbott struck twice in the morning session before a recovery mission from Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith got Australia to 109-2 by tea.
Given all the off-field distractions over the past week, Proteas captain Faf du Plessis ranks his hundred on day one at Adelaide as the best of his six.
Faf du Plessis scored his sixth Test century at the same ground he scored a century at on debut, as SA declared on 259-9.