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The victorious South Africa team.-AP

Despite Yusuf Pathan's ferocious assault, South Africa clinched the series thanks mainly to a century by Hashim Amla and four wickets by fast bowler Morne Morkel.

Yusuf Pathan hit a blistering 68-ball century but could not stop South Africa from winning the series-deciding fifth and final one-day international against India at SuperSport Park.

South Africa won by 33 runs by the Duckworth/Lewis method, clinching a come-from-behind 3-2 series win thanks mainly to a century by Hashim Amla and four wickets by fast bowler Morne Morkel.

Opening batsman Amla made 116 not out as South Africa reached 250 for nine in a rain-interrupted innings.

Set to make 268 to win in 46 overs, India was headed for a heavy defeat when it slumped to 119 for eight with fast bowlers Morkel and Dale Steyn inflicting most of the damage.

But Pathan unleashed a ferocious assault on the South African bowlers during a ninth wicket stand of 100 runs with Zaheer Khan. Pathan slammed eight sixes and eight fours as he made 105 before he top-edged another attempted big hit against Morkel and sent a catch spiralling to cover.

As the ball flew to all parts of the ground, South African captain Graeme Smith called on Morkel and the fast bowler finally induced a false stroke. Morkel finished with four for 52 as India was all out for 234.

South Africa's innings was interrupted when it was strongly placed at 226 for three after 42 overs. The rain caused a delay of more than an hour and the match was reduced to 46 overs a side.

South Africa lost six wickets for 24 runs in the remaining four overs, with a succession of batsmen falling to ill-judged strokes and two run-outs in a chase for quick runs.

Dhoni sent South Africa in, hoping to take advantage of expected early morning life in the pitch and also to have the option of revising his team's strategy in the event of predicted rain interruptions.

Smith fell once again to Zaheer — for the 11th time in international cricket — edging a catch to second slip in the third over. But Amla played a calm innings, content to play the supporting role in a second wicket stand of 97 with Morne van Wyk, who made 56 off 63 balls. Amla then picked up the pace in a fourth wicket stand of 102 off 98 balls with J. P. Duminy (35).

There were only four boundaries as Amla reached fifty off 72 balls, but he added another five fours as he needed just 41 more deliveries to reach the first century by a batsman of either side in the series.

THE SCORES

Fifth ODI, Centurion, January 23, 2011. South Africa won by 33 runs (D/L method).

South Africa: G. Smith c Pathan b Zaheer 7; H. Amla (not out) 116; M. Van Wyk c & b Yuvraj 56; A. B. de Villiers st. Dhoni b Yuvraj 11; J. P. Duminy c & b Munaf 35; F. Du Plessis b Munaf 8; J. Botha c Dhoni b Munaf 2; R. Peterson b Zaheer 4; D. Steyn (run out) 0; M. Morkel (run out) 0; L. Tsotsobe (not out) 0; Extras (lb-6, w-5) 11. Total (for nine wkts., in 46 overs) 250.

Fall of wickets: 1-16, 2-113, 3-129, 4-231, 5-242, 6-244, 7-250, 8-250, 9-250.

India bowling: Zaheer 9-1-47-2; Munaf 8-0-50-3; Chawla 7-0-32-0; Harbhajan 8-0-33-0; Pathan 2-0-10-0; Yuvraj 8-0-45-2; Rohit 2-0-14-0; Raina 2-0-13-0.

India: Parthiv Patel c du Plessis b Morkel 38; Rohit Sharma b Tsotsobe 5; V. Kohli c de Villiers b Morkel 2; M. Dhoni c Smith b Morkel 5; Yuvraj Singh c Duminy b Steyn 8; S. Raina c Morkel b Steyn 11; Y. Pathan c du Plessis b Morkel 105; Harbhajan Singh c Duminy b Botha 13; P. Chawla b Peterson 8; Zaheer Khan c Morkel b Tsotsobe 24; Munaf Patel (not out) 4; Extras (lb-2, w-7, nb-2) 11. Total (in 40.2 overs) 234.

Fall of wickets: 1-21, 2-31, 3-45, 4-60, 5-60, 6-74, 7-98, 8-119, 9-219.

South Africa bowling: Steyn 9-1-32-2; Tsotsobe 7.2-0-57-2; Morkel 8-0-52-4; Botha 8-0-33-1; Peterson 7-0-45-1; Du Plessis 1-0-13-0.