Grace, who is ranked 30 in the world, shares first place at seven under with American Chase Koepka, a brother of reigning US Open champion Brooks, who lies 306 places lower on the merit ladder.
"I get on a streak like this where I make one of those longish putts in the first couple of holes, then I pretty much know I just have to get it there".
Paisley, seeking a first title on the tour, is 15 under-par for the tournament and leads home favourite Branden Grace (66).
Grace, a South African, had a haywire front nine that included two eagles, two birdies and two bogeys.
The Frenchman was in new territory when he shared the 36-hole lead, never before having been in the top five at halfway on the European Tour. "I'm just really excited about it".
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Chris Paisley will take a narrow one-shot lead into the final day's play of the BMW SA Open as Branden Grace moved into second position with a blemish-free back nine. "I certainly hope that I can keep that trend (of Englishmen winning the SA Open) going". France's Saddier had the round of the day at Glendower Golf Club in Johannesburg, a blistering, course record-equaling 63 with an eagle, seven birdies and no bogeys.
"At the moment it's weird, I feel like I didn't play awesome".
South African major winners Ernie Els (71), Retief Goosen (69) and Charl Schwartzel (69) all had solid opening rounds, but Trevor Immelman (79) carded five bogeys and a double-bogey on a day to forget for the 2008 U.S. Masters champion.
Defending champion Graeme Storm of England, who pipped golf superstar Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland in a play-off previous year to win the second oldest national championship after the British Open, carded a 75.
South Africa's Darren Fichardt is a shot further back after surging through the field with a brilliant 64 which featured eight birdies in the last 12 holes.