Yuvraj Singh guided India home against South Africa in the rain-delayed third and final ODI of the Future Cup in Belfast on Sunday.
Skipper Rahul Dravid won the toss and elected to field in the series-decider at the Civil Service Cricket Club, Stormont.
The Proteas posted a total of 148 runs in the series-decider tie that was reduced by rain to 31 overs per side. In return, India chased the target with four balls and six wickets remaining.
Makhaya Ntini gave his side an early breakthrough, scalping the prized wicket of Sachin Tendulkar. The opener returned for a low score of eight today unlike his flamboyant 93 on Friday, when he reached the 15,000-run mark.
In the fifth over, Dale Steyn baffled Gautam Gambhir with his shortish delivery outside off stump as the batsman walked back to the pavilion for five.
Mark Boucher grabbed a catch to dismiss opener Sourav Ganguly off Andre Nel's delivery. The southpaw returned at 17.
After hitting four boundaries in one over, Dravid was run out in a reckless manner by attempting to score a run which was not there.
Man-of-the-Match Yuvraj Singh along with Mahendra Singh Dhoni brightened India's hope of a crucial win against the Proteas. Yuvraj hit much-needed boundaries while completing his 28th ODI fifty along the way.
Earlier, Ajit Agarkar gave India a good start packing off skipper Jacques Kallis for nought after trapping opener Morne van Wyk also for a duck.
Following the pacer's double strike, Sourav Ganguly removed AB de Villiers (15) and Jean-Paul Duminy (0) back-to-back.
Herschelle Gibbs and Justin Kemp led a fightback steering the team past the 100-run milepost. In the 29th over, Zaheer Khan pitched a yorker that dashed into the off stump, dismissing Gibbs at 56.
Kemp hit a six off Tendulkar in the first ball of the last over. The Indian ace avenged for the sixer by ripping the batsman's stumps in his next delivery. Kemp walked back at 61 off as many balls.
After dropping a catch earlier in the game, Karthik grabbed an easy one at deep mid-on dismissing Andrew Hall off Tendulkar. It was the Little Master's second wicket in one over as South Africa finished on 148 for 7 in the stipulated overs.
India: Rahul Dravid (captain), Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik, Ajit Agarkar, Zaheer Khan, Piyush Chawla and Rudra Pratap Singh.
South Africa: Jacques Kallis (captain), AB de Villiers, Morne van Wyk, Jean-Paul Duminy, Herschelle Gibbs, Mark Boucher, Andrew Hall, Justin Kemp, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Dale Steyn.