SA defeated Australia with a convincing 309 runs to win 3 test match series 1-0 and retain their ICC test ranking top spot. SA had given a record chase of 621 runs to the Australians to win and achieve the top spot in the rankings.  
In order to chase the total, the Australian start was not good. Their 2 wickets fell early on. That brought Ricky Ponting to the crease. In order to honour the great batsmen, SA players welcomed him on to the ground with a guard of honour like welcome. He started off with quite an authority using his trade mark pull shot. The crowd expected a big score from him. However, he was out at eight off Peterson. The whole WACA crowd was up on their feet to bid him farewell. All the SA players bade him good bye as well. Ponting raised his bat in response to their support and applause.
After Ponting, rest of the batsmen including Clarke and Hussey also did not show quite resistance. Only Mitchel Starc, the No 10 batsman and Ed Cowan showed some resistance and scored half centuries. Starc was the top scorer with 68 not out on 32 balls. Australia looked like a team that had used all its cards in the first two tests. Some were left to think that probably, Ponting’s exit had affected Australia’s performance. It was Michael Clarke’s first series loss as captain. 
The score card of the was: South Africa 225 (du Plessis 78*) and 569 (Amla 196, de Villiers 169, Smith 84) beat Australia 163 (Wade 68) and 322 (Starc 68*, Cowan 53) by 309 runs