South Africa tailender Keshav Maharaj braved the pain against India in a career-best knock, and combined with Vernon Philander in a gutsy rearguard action to push the tourists’ first innings total to 275 in the second test at Pune on Saturday.

Despite the effort from the lower-order batsmen, South Africa, who trail 1-0 in the three-test series after the opening loss at Visakhaptanam, still finished 326 runs behind India’s mammoth first innings total of 601-5 declared.

Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin said, “South African team bats till number 11, so you’ll have to bowl at them, like you bowl at the top order every single time, whoever walks in.”

Jadeja took out Senuran Muthusamy, but Philander and Maharaj, who looked in pain on numerous occasions, soldiered on.

South African batsman Temba Buvama expressed disappointment with the top order performance. He said, “it does kind of dent your ego when you see the lower order go out and fight it out and do what you are really paid to do.”

India has not decided on follow-on yet.