New Delhi: Team India defeated South Africa by seven wickets in the third and final One-Day-International on Tuesday to win the three-match series 2-1. Batting first at New Delhi’s Arun Jaitley Stadium, South Africa got all out for just 99 runs. In reply, Shikhar Dhawan-led second-string Indian team comfortably chased down the target in 19.1 overs with opener Shubman Gill (49 runs in 57 balls), Shreyas Iyer (28 not out off 23 balls) starring with the bat.

This is India’s biggest win against South Africa in terms of balls remaining. South Africa batters were bamboozled by Kuldeep Yadav, Washington Sundar and Shahbaz Ahmed. The spin trio, led by left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav, bagged eight wickets for 65 runs in 15.1 overs. Kuldeep Yadav took four wickets for 18 runs in 4.1 overs and was adjudged player of the match for his bowling heroics. 

“It was perfect. It’s been going well since the IPL. Today, I missed the hat-trick but it was still great. Maybe I could have gone over the wicket but thinking too much can make it go away. Siraj, Avesh and others bowled well. The wicket was gripping. I mixed up the pace and set the batters with the fields. I was working on my rhythm in the past few months. I was a bit slower but quickened up post-injury. But haven’t lost the spin, the rhythm has been the focus,” Kuldeep Yadav said as he reflected on his match-winning performance in the Ind vs SA series decider on Tuesday.

India’s win in 3rd ODI is their 38th international win this year across formats. The Men in Blue also equaled Australia’s record for most wins in a calendar year, having achieved this feat in 2003. India also avenged the 0-3 defeat in the ODI series in South Africa earlier this year. 

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By Dipak

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