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Ashwin's 12-wicket haul hands South Africa away series defeat after nine years

Ravichandran Ashwin ended up with a 12-wicket haul in the game as India defeated South Africa by 124 runs in the third Test in Nagpur.
Ravichandran Ashwin ended up with a 12-wicket haul in the game as India defeated South Africa by 124 runs in the third Test in Nagpur.
©REUTERS / Action Images

India 215 & 173 (Imran Tahir 5-38) beat
South Africa 79 & 185 (Ashwin 7-66) by 124 runs
Third Test, Nagpur, day three

Ravichandran Ashwin produced career best figures of seven for 66 in the second innings to dismiss South Africa for 185 on day three and secure a 124-run victory for India in the third Test in Nagpur allowing Virat Kohli's men to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. 

South Africa resumed the day at 32 for two needing 278 more to win but would fall well short as the pattern of bowlers dominating continued.

Dean Elgar (18) signalled South Africa's intention with a slog sweep over deep mid-wicket for a six off Ashwin early on, but a couple of deliveries later, Ashwin got his revenge having Elgar caught at short leg.

AB de Villiers (9) never looked comfortable and he was trapped lbw to give Ashwin his third wicket as South Africa were restricted to 58 for four at that stage.

Just when it looked like the Indian spinners were set for another easy outing in the park against the Proteas, Faf du Plessis (39) and Hashim Amla (39) laid other plans.

The duo decided to trust their defence to negate the Indian spinners as they scored only 24 runs in the next 10 overs and for the first time in the game the pitch looked as if there were no demons in it.

Amla was given a reprieve when Wriddhiman Saha failed to hold on a very tough chance off Amit Mishra (3-51).

Du Plessis scored a boundary of Mishra in the 40th over and followed it with a six in the next over from Ravindra Jadeja (0-34) as South Africa went into lunch at 105 for four, needing 205 more to win.

In the first over into the second session, du Plessis survived a close lbw shout off Ashwin but the impact was outside off stump.

Amla brought up the 50-run stand with a boundary in the 47th over, capitalizing on a full toss from Mishra.

Ashwin and Jadeja bowled in tandem to dry up the runs and South Africa managed only 17 runs in 19 overs.

It was Mishra who provided the much-needed breakthrough for India as he had Amla caught at gully. The 72-run stand between Amla and du Plessis is South Africa's highest partnership of the series.

In his next over, Mishra castled du Plessis too, leaving South Africa at 135 for six. South Africa went to tea needing 159 more to win and four wickets in hand.

It took India just 13.5 overs in the third session to wrap up the remaining wickets with Ashwin invovled in all four of them.

He first had Jean Paul Duminy (19) lbw and Dane Vilas (12) caught behind to capture another five-wicket haul.

Kagiso Rabada (6) and Morne Morkel (4) then oo perished in quick succession as Ashwin finished with seven wickets in total. India won the game by a comfortable margin of 124 runs and have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.

This is South Africa' first away series defeat in 15 tours. Ashwin was unsurprisingly named as the man of the match for his 12-wicket haul in the game.

The fourth and final game of the series will be played at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi from 3rd December.

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