South Africa sealed the series by crushing Australia by 492 runs in the fourth and final test on Tuesday.

The result ranks as Australia's second-heaviest defeat by runs, and their heaviest in 90 years.

Needing seven wickets on the final day at the Wanderers to clinch the series, South Africa began with two in the first over from Vernon Philander and never looked back.

Australia was bowled out for 119, losing seven wickets for 31 on the last morning. Australia survived just over an hour and just 16.4 overs of the final day in Johannesburg.

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Philander finished with 6-21, and six wickets for just 12 runs on the day, clinching a third straight victory of the series for South Africa.South Africa won the series 3-1 having gone 1-0 down with defeat in the opener in Durban.

The triumph also gave South Africa a long-awaited first series victory at home over Australia since 1970, the last test series in South Africa before two decades of isolation because of apartheid.

Australia's defeat goes down as the heaviest by any team in terms of runs in tests since 1934, and the fourth heaviest ever.

The humiliation came against the backdrop of the Australians' ball-tampering scandal in the third test in Cape Town, which led to captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft all being thrown off the tour and banned long-term.