Dale Steyn produced a fiery spell to claim a six-wicket haul and end his barren run to put South Africa in control in the rain-hit second day of the second Test against South Africa in Durban, on Friday.
Steyn finished with splendid figures of six for 100 to bowl out India for 334 in their first innings as they lost their last five wickets for 14 runs in 29 deliveries.
In reply, South Africa got off to a positive start, scoring 82 for no loss in 20 overs with Graeme Smith on 35 and Alviro Petersen on 46.
Earlier, play on the second day began only in the post lunch session after a three-hour delay due to rain.
The 29-year-old Steyn brought South Africa back in the game after scalping three wickets in a space of 10 deliveries and then in a second spell wreaked havoc with another three wickets in 14 deliveries as Indians collapsed.
Having gone wicketless for 69.2 overs, Steyn shrugged off the disappointment with an inspired spell of fast bowling as he removed Cheteshwar Pujara (70), Murali Vijay (97) and Rohit Sharma (0) in a space of 10 deliveries to reduce India to 199 for four, when the proceedings started in the post-lunch session.
In the post tea-session, Steyn again hit back after Ajinkya Rahane (51 not out) and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni had a 55-run partnership to take India to 320 for five before another collapse occured.
This time he claimd the wickes of Dhoni (24), Zaheer Khan (0) and Ishant Sharma (4) in the space of of 14 deliveries.
In between Steyn's scalps, left-arm spinner Robin Peterson dismissed Ravindra Jadeja (0) caught by Jacques Kallis at first slip, who completed the milestone of 200 catches in his last Test match.
When Steyn dismissed Zaheer Khan after wicketkeeper AB de Villiers plucked off a stunner from thin air, he had completed his 22nd five-wicket haul in Test cricket.
Having started the day at a comfortable 181 for one, the Indians looked all at sea against some inspired bowling by Steyn who swung the ball at a fast pace and also got the old ball to reverse.
From 181 for 1, India were reduced to 199 for four as Steyn pitched one outside the off-stump to get rid of Pujara caught by De Villiers after hitting nine fours in 132 balls.
Vijay, who was peppered with short stuff failed to complete his century when Steyn angled a rising delivery onto the ribs which was gloved for De Villiers to complete a brilliant leg-side catch. Rohit Sharma's (0) wretched form continued as he shouldered arms to an incutter that rocked back his middle-stump.
Virat Kohli (46) tried to control the damage with a 66-run stand for the fifth wicket with Rahane, who also looked in good touch.
Both weren't unduly perturbed the by the South African attack as they took the score past 250. Kohli played some nice strokes including a pull shot off Steyn and a wristy boundary through mid-wicket off Vernon Philander.
Just when it seemed that Kohli was destined to get another big score, Morne Morkel (3/50) fired another rising delivery which Kohli tried to run fine but was caught down the leg side by keeper de Villiers.
Dhoni joined Rahane and the duo took the score to 271 for five at lunch.
With left-arm spinner Robin Peterson in operation from one end, runs kept coming as the duo completed their 50-run partnership in only 71 balls before another slide was initiated by Steyn.
Dhoni as usual went for a drive and Smith took the simple catch at first slip. Jadeja (0) didn't trouble the scorers as he pushed at an off-break from Duminy to give Kallis his 200th catch.
In the next over, Steyn completed his five-wicket haul as de Villiers pulled off a stunning catch timing his jump to perfection and pluck it out of mid air as Zaheer Khan had slashed hard. Two balls later, another full delivery saw the back of Ishant Sharma (4) as India were reduced to 330 for nine.
Rahane completed his maiden Test half-century of the next over from 112 balls, before Morkel finished off the innings, getting Mohammed Shami caught behind to leave Rahane remained
stranded on 51 at the other end. India were bowled out for 334 in 111.3 overs.
Steyn had last taken a wicket in the first innings of the first Test at Johannesburg, when he had dismissed Shikhar Dhawan. Since then he bowled 69.2 overs giving away 217 runs before removing Pujara to end his barren spell.
Smith and Peterson carried forward South Africa's momentum as they scored runs at a brisk pace.
Both Smith and Peterson started off by hitting a couple of boundaries each off Zaheer Khan and Mohammed Shami in the first two overs to set the tone. Having been pegged back due to some inspirational bowling from the Proteas, the Indian bowlers looked clueless as it was total domination on the part of the South African openers as they hit 12 boundaries amongst themselves.
Image: Dale Steyn celebrates the wicket of Mahendra Singh Dhoni with his team mates.
Photograph: Rogan Ward/Reuters