England were in dire straits after being reduced to 39 for six wickets in their second innings at close of play on the second day of their three-day match against the Pakistan Cricket Board Patron's XI.
Paul Collingwood (1) and Ian Bell (0) were batting with England just 84 runs ahead in their first tour game.
Having taken a first innings lead of 45 runs after dismissing the home side for 211, England shuffled around with their batting order and were rocked by pace bowlers Mohammad Irshad and Yasir Arafat.
England's decision to hold back first innings centurion Marcus Trescothick and send in Matthew Prior with Strauss backfired as six wickets fell in 9.3 overs.
Left-armer Najaf Shah started the batting slide by dismissing Strauss for six when he was caught at first slip by Bazid Khan in the fifth over.
Irshad then had Alex Loudon caught behind for one, trapped captain Michael Vaughan leg before for a duck and forced Prior (16) to pull straight to Arafat at deep square leg.
Arafat, who took 4-45 in the first innings, produced two beautiful off-cutters to bowl Kevin Pietersen (10) and Geraint Jones (0) in the same over, leaving the visitors on 38 for six.
"We have a very good chance of causing an upset and putting pressure on England at the start of the tour," Patron's coach and former Test player Rashid Khan said.
England had declared on their overnight total of 256 for nine, with Trescothick unbeaten on 124.
They went through the Patron's top order and reduced them to 79-6 but Shahzad Malik's 37 and a final-wicket stand of 61 from Zulqarnain Haider (34 not out) and Tahir Khan (32) rescued the home team.
James Anderson, Liam Plunkett and spinner Shaun Udal all took three wickets each. Ashley Giles did not bowl due to a upset stomach.