At Johannesburg, December 23, 24, 26, 27, 28. Drawn. A thoroughly entertaining match ended with honours even, although for the most part Australia had to fight an uphill battle. McGlew, the acting captain in the absence of van Ryneveld, won the toss on a perfect pitch and he and Goddard began with a partnership of 176, easily the best first-wicket stand for South Africa against Australia. Goddard, missed at slip when 32, once more just failed to obtain his first Test century. Rain caused three stoppages and restricted play to four and three-quarter hours on the first day when South Africa made 222 for two.
McGlew, 100 not out, added only eight more, but good batting also came from Waite, Endean and McLean. Waite followed McGlew with a century and South Africa declared at 470 for nine, their best total against Australia since 1935-36. Facing a big task, Australia lost their first four wickets for 62 and when the sixth went at 177 a follow-on seemed likely. McDonald alone of the early batsmen opposed Heine confidently, but the later men redeemed the situation. Heine, who at one period had taken four for 37, jarred his right leg and left the field for the last hour.
Benaud and Simpson, in his first Test, led the recovery. Benaud, batting splendidly, completed his century on the third morning and did most to restrict South Africa's lead to 102. Australia came right back into the game by taking four South African wickets before lunch for 19, Davidson claiming three for 11. Waite and Endean again showed good form and their stand of 129, a record for the fifth wicket by South Africa against Australia, put their side back on top. The last five wickets fell cheaply on the last morning and Australia needed 304 to win in four and a half hours.
After Burke retired with damaged fingers they did not attempt the task and easily saved the game. Mackay batted stubbornly for three and three-quarter hours and made his best Test score. In South Africa's second innings Grout held six catches and established a new record for a wicket-keeper in any Test, beating the five by two other Australians, W. A. Oldfield and G. Langley (three times). The attendance of 112,000 was the best for any match in South Africa.