The golf tournament is the first event on the 2012-13 European Tour schedule.
Heavy rain left the Royal Durban course waterlogged and partially flooded, leading organizers to push play back to Friday. The tournament is still scheduled for 72 holes.
"The fairways are very waterlogged and the course hasn't improved as much as we hoped it would overnight," European Tour Tournament Director Mikael Eriksson told Sky Sports.
"The forecast wasn't bad at all for today and we hoped the course might have dried out a little bit more but it hasn't actually."