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India vs South Africa, 6th ODI: India ride on record-breaking Virat Kohli to win series 5-1

After India restricted South Africa to 204 all out in the sixth ODI on Friday, courtesy Shardul Thakur's 4/52,  Kohli scored an unbeaten 129* in 96 balls as the visitors won by 8 wickets in 32.1 overs.

India vs South Africa, 6th ODI: India ride on record-breaking Virat Kohli to win series 5-1
Virat Kohli after scoring his 35th ODI ton on February 16, 2018, in Centurion (Photo: BCCI)

Virat Kohli's 35th ODI hundred put the cherry on top of India's series win that turned from 4-1 to 5-1 with an eight-wicket triumph in the sixth and final ODI against South Africa at the SuperSport Park in Centurion on Friday.

After Shardul Thakur's 4/52 led India's bowling efforts to dismiss the hosts for a below-par 204, 'chase master' Kohli did what he does best - scoring centuries in a winning cause. And he did it in style, staying unbeaten on 129 off just 96 balls - decorating his knock with 19 fours and two sixes.

It also knocked off a few more records for Kohli, who became the first batsman to score 500 runs in a bilateral ODI series. He finished with 558 runs, going past the record held by Rohit Sharma (491). The tally also is highest by any captain in a bilateral ODI series. 

Fast bowler Lungi Ngidi was the lone wicket-taker for South Africa with 2/54 on a day when then Proteas bowlers suffered at the hands of India captain.

The run-chase didn't start on a promising note as Rohit (15) had to walk back early. The score read 19/1. He gloved an attempted hook shot to wicketkeeper Heinrich Klaasen.  

Dhawan then added 61 runs with captain Kohli, who decided to take on South Africa's tactics of trying to bounce the Indians out. As result, it brought about runs than the wickets South Africans were after.

Dhawan's (18) stay, however, was shortened by Ngidi as the Indian opener's cut shot went straight into the hands of Khaya Zondo at point. 

Kohli and Rahane (34*) then knocked off the remaining runs, with the skipper's two consecutive sixes off Tahir and then the winning four off the same bowler in his next over got India home with 17.5 overs to spare. 

Earlier, South African rode on Zondo's 54 to struggle past the 200-run mark as wickets kept falling around the young batsman.

Jasprit Bumrah (2/24) and Yuzvendra Chahal (2/38) aided Thakur's best ODI figures. Kuldeep Yadav (1/51) and Hardik Pandya (1/39) took one wicket apiece. 

After South Africa lost openers Hashim Amla (10) and Aiden Markram (24) with just 43 runs on the board, AB de Villiers and Zondo added 62 runs for the third wicket but Chahal cleaned up De Villiers with his flipper to dent the Proteas. 

Chahal then also accounted for Zondo, who fell to the pressure of wickets tumbling around him. 

The hosts could have folded well under the 200-run mark but for the efforts of Andile Phehlukwayo and Morne Morkel, who scored 34 and 20 respectively.