Pakistan, at one stage, stuttering at 54-4 in their second innings after conceding a 70-run lead, finished the third day yesterday at 125-4. They lead by 55 runs with six wickets intact, setting the scene for an intriguing fourth day's play.
Left-arm spinner Monty Panesar took 3-44 to spark a top order collapse before Ali (46) and Asad Shafiq (35) shared an unbroken 71-run stand for the fifth wicket to lead Pakistan's fight back.
Patient Broad, who earlier in the day hit an aggressive unbeaten 58 to help England to 327 in their first knock, said Saturday's first hour will be crucial.
"In Test cricket you expect partnerships," said Broad. "We just stayed patient and with 19 overs to the new ball, with only a lead of 50, we're delighted with our position." Pakistan lead the three-Test series on account of their 10-wicket win in last week's Dubai Test, and will hope to thwart England who are aiming for a series-levelling win.