England's pace-cum-spin attack delivered the goods to keep Pakistan down to 256-7 on the opening day of the second Test at Abu Dhabi Stadium here yesterday.
Pakistan's skipper Misbah-ul-Haq in full flow at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi yesterday. Pic/AFP
Paceman Stuart Broad took 3-47 while spinner Graeme Swann (3-52) bowled well to keep England's hopes of squaring the three-Test series alive after they lost the first match in Dubai by 10 wickets inside three days.
Skipper Misbah-ul Haq, unbeaten on 83 at the close with Saeed Ajmal on nought, held the Pakistan innings together during a fighting stand of 100 for the fifth wicket with Asad Shafiq (58).
That partnership helped Pakistan revive their innings after Broad chipped in with two wickets in the post-lunch session but England got three more wickets in the last session, two off which were claimed by Swann.
"I think we lost two wickets more then we would have liked, but Misbah is still there and if we manage a total of around 300-350 then our bowlers have a good chance because the spin on the pitch has surprised everyone," said batsman Taufiq Umar.
England, ranked world number one in Test cricket, could have had a more fruitful day had they not dropped four regulation catches, but Broad and Swann made sure their fumbles did not prove too costly.
James Anderson dropped Misbah on 30 off Monty Panesar, while Cook let off Shafiq off Swann on 53 before Andrew Strauss floored Adnan Akmal on nought in Anderson's first over with the second new ball.
Misbah notched his 12th half-century in 14 Tests -- and 16th in all -- since being made Test captain in October 2010 and holds the key for Pakistan to post a challenging total on a pitch that was expected to help batsmen.
The Pakistani skipper has so far hit five boundaries and four sixes -- all off Panesar -- during his fighting 168-ball knock.