Oscar had already put Brazil ahead in the opening ten minutes before Neymar added the second just before the break.
The visitors then really turned on the style in the second half - not least by switching from their traditional yellow to their blue second strip for the second period - with Neymar scoring again almost immediately from the restart.
South Africa struggled to cope with a star-studded attack, Fernandinho adding the fourth before Neymar completed his hat-trick in injury time.
Jose Felipe Scolari’s side could have been ahead after only five minutes had Fred kept his shot under the bar from Hulk’s accurate cross, but four minutes later they took the lead.
A defence-splitting pass from Hulk fell straight into Oscar’s path and the Chelsea midfielder lifted it daintily over debutant keeper Ronwen Williams and into the net.
Williams was kept busy in goal, keeping his side in the game with two decent saves from the busy Neymar. But the forward was not to be denied at the third time of asking, blasting it through the keeper’s legs to score his sixth international goal in ten matches.
The second half was barely twenty seconds old before Neymar bagged his second, calmly lobbing Williams from Fred’s assist, while Fernandinho’s first international goal with a late piledriver put the game beyond any doubt.
There was still time for Neymar to complete a well-deserved hat-trick, slotting home from substitute Jo’s knock-back to complete the rout.
Victory for Brazil marked their seventh on the trot and they next face Panama and Serbia before their first World Cup group match.
- Sports & Recreation
- South Africa