Rabada finished with 6-16, the best ever one-day haul by a debutant, as Bangladesh folded cheaply and made only 160 in 36.3 overs in a game reduced to 40 overs by rain.
South Africa’s powerful batting line-up had little trouble chasing that down win but it was Rabada who stole the show on his fifth international outing – the other four came in Twenty20 matches.
The 20-year-old, who was selected ahead of experienced Morne Morkel, struck with the third ball of his second over when he sent the off-stump of opener Tamim Iqbal cartwheeling.
Next ball, Litton Das offered a low catch to Farhaan Behardien at mid-wicket and Rabada went on to trap Mahmudullah leg-before with the fourth ball of the over to complete the hat-trick, matching the feat of Bangladesh’s Taijul Islam, who achieved it against Zimbabwe on his ODI debut in December, also??at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium.
Rabada??later dismissed opener Soumya Sarkar (27) before Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim provided a brief resistance for Bangladesh with 53-run fifth wicket stand.
Shakib top-scored with 48 runs for the home side while Rahim added 24, but Rabada returned to removed??Mashrafe Mortaza and Jubair Hossain to break the ODI debut wicket-taking record held by West Indies’ Fidel Edwards (6-22).
The target never looked like troubling South Africa, even when they lost opener Hashim Amla for 14 off the bowling of Mortaza with the score on only 22.
Quinton de Kock and Faf du Plessis added 43 for the second wicket before the former was dismissed by Nasir Hossain for 35, an innings that lasted 41 balls and included five fours.
But that would be Bangladesh’s last success as du Plessis and Rilee Rossouw embarked on an unbeaten 99-run stand for the third wicket to take South Africa over the winning line with nearly nine overs to spare.
Du Plessis finished with the top score of the day, 63 off 75 balls, while Rossouw reached 45 but the headlines all belonged to South Africa’s new pace hope Rabada.