India captain Virat Kohli made a magnificent 160 not out to help his team register a thumping 124-run win in the third ODI against South Africa at Cape Town's Newlands on Wednesday.
It was Kohli's second century in the series, 34th overall, and thanks to his efforts India posted a solid 303/6. Kohli took 159 balls for his runs and hit 12 fours and two sixes. With this century, he became India's most successful captain in terms of ODI centuries as he overtook Sourav Ganguly's 11.
In their chase, South Africa lost Hashim Amla in the second over to Jasprit Bumrah and after that they never really recovered.
JP Duminy and Aiden Markram added 78 for the second wicket to keep the hosts in the hunt but once Markram was sent back by Kuldeep Yadav for 32, things started going downhill for them.
Kuldeep and Yuzvendra Chahal once again choked the Proteas and returned 4/23 and 4/46 respectively as the home side was dismissed for 179 all out in 40 overs. Duminy was the only South African batsman who stood up to the Indian bowlers with a well-made 51.
Earlier in the day, South Africa had won and toss and decided to have a bowl. Opener Rohit Sharma departed in the first over of the match for a duck as he fell caught behind off the bowling of Kagiso Rabada. It appeared it was a good decision on stand-in captain Markram's part. But that opinion changed as the match progressed.
Kohli joined Shikar Dhawan and both played beautifully to set the foundation for a big score. The 140-run stand was broken by Duminy as he dispatched Dhawan for 76 against the run of play.
India kept losing wickets at regular intervals after that. Ajinkya Rahane (11), Hardik Pandya (14), MS Dhoni (10), Kedar Jadhav (1) all departed without contributing much, leaving Kohli extremely frustrated at the other end.
At last he found great company in Bhuvneshwar Kumar (16) and added an unbeaten 67 for the seventh wicket with him. The Indian captain hit Kagiso Rabada for a six and a four off the last two balls of the innings to take India over 300.
Kohli had survived a leg-before when he was yet to open his account. The umpire had given him out off Rabada, however, replays showed he had an inside edge onto the front pad.
The highest ever chase on this ground was 258, and the way the South Africans started theirs it soon became clear that the record will remain intact.
India now lead the six-game rubber 3-0. The fourth ODI will be played at Johannesburg on Saturday.