With top-ranked South Africa losing the Johannesburg Test against England on Saturday to concede an unassailable 0-2 lead in the series, the decks have been cleared for India to move to No 1 in the ICC Test rankings.
India had defeated South Africa 0-3 at home in December, which saw the lead enjoyed by the Proteas cut to just four points. Thus South Africa had to either draw or win the four-Test home series to retain the No. 1 position.
The loss in the third Test, following a dramatic batting collapse at the Wanderers, sends those hopes up in smoke. South Africa will only fight for pride in the final game.
Even if the hosts win the last Test, a 2-1 series defeat will mean they will slip to 109 points, behind India and Australia, who are both on 110 points.
However, India are ahead of Australia on decimal points. Their position will reflect in the fresh rankings, which will be released at the end of the series in South Africa.
If they lose the final Test too, the Proteas will slip to fourth in the rankings table. The last time India were No. 1 in Test rankings was in August 2011; they were dethroned by England.