Melbourne:Australia appeared close to being knocked off its number one Test side's place after South Africa battered them on the fourth day of the second Test in which the visitors need another 153 runs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.
Australia, in their second innings, was bowled out for 247 despite Ricky Ponting's heroics, leaving the Proteas to chase 183 runs for victory.
South Africa was 30 for no loss at the end of fourth day's play with captain Graeme Smith (25) and Neil McKenzie (3) are in the middle.
Ponting, who hit a brilliant 101 in the first innings, fell short of his second hundred in the match when he was out at the score of 99.
Mitchell Johnson (43) was the second highest scorer in the Australian innings.
It turned out to be a memorable outing for South African pacer Dale Steyn who came up with his second successive five-wicket haul of the match.
Steyn had also contributed 76 runs in South Africa's first innings.