There was no play at Blundstone Arena as rain wreaked havoc on Sunday, with umpires officially abandoning proceedings shortly after 2pm local time.
Sunday’s washout provides some welcome relief for the embattled Aussies and captain Steve Smith, who face an uphill task trying to salvage the second Test.
South Africa dominated the opening day as 15 wickets fell on Saturday.
Australia, who lost the first Test in Perth, were dismissed for just 85 after being sent into bat, with the Proteas 171-5 in reply – a lead of 86 heading into day three.
Temba Bavuma (38) and Quinton De Kock (28) are unbeaten at the crease.