India retain No. 2 spot in Tests

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> India defeated South Africa by eight wickets on the third day of the final Test on Sunday and squared the three-Test series 1-1.

Updated: April 14, 2008 09:09 IST
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New Delhi:

India defeated South Africa by 8 wickets on the third day of the final Test on Sunday and squared the three-Test series 1-1.

Off-spinner Harbhajan bagged 4-44 and part-time spinner Sehwag 3-12 as South Africa, having conceded a 60-run lead on the third day, were shot out for 121 in their second innings on a turning track with unpredictable bounce.

India raced to the 62-run target in 13.1 overs, with Sehwag smashing two successive sixes off spinner Paul Harris in a 12-ball 22. Sourav Ganguly (13 not out) and Rahul Dravid (18 not out) then completed the win.

India had lost the second Test by an innings and 90 runs in Ahmedabad and drawn the first in Chennai.

The home team scored 325 and 64 for two, and South Africa 265 and 121 at the Kapur Stadium.

It was South Africa's third-lowest total against India in Tests and the second successive match of the series to be finished inside three days. As many as 13 wickets fell on the third day.

Their batting then collapsed on a dusty pitch after Sehwag claimed key batsman Jacques Kallis (15) and skipper Graeme Smith (35) in succession to end their dogged 38-run third wicket stand.

Harbhajan struck straightaway after tea, taken on 88 for four, before teenaged paceman Ishant Sharma struck twice in one over as South Africa tumbled to their third lowest total against India.

Shanthakumaran Sreesanth (29) earlier frustrated South Africa with a 46-run stand for the last wicket with Ishant Sharma (14 not out) before India were bowled out for 325 in their first innings in reply to the visitors' 265.

The last-wicket pair batted more than an hour in the morning, adding 37 vital to their team's overnight total of 288-9.

It was the first time that two back to back Tests in India had finished within three days as the hosts held onto their 2nd place in the ICC Test Rankings.

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