Former Pakistan captain Zaheer Abbas has accused Misbah-ul-Haq's side of taking their foot off the gas after they briefly moved to the top of the ICC Test rankings earlier this year.
Pakistan's ascent to number one was followed by a 2-0 series defeat in New Zealand and they also appear set to begin a three-Test rubber with Australia on a losing note after being outplayed over the first three days in Brisbane.
At stumps on Saturday, Pakistan were 70-2 in pursuit of 490, having been skittled for just 142 in their first innings.
Zaheer is quoted by Cricket Australia's official website as telling reporters in Lahore: "We got careless after becoming number one in the rankings and it resulted in bad performances in New Zealand and Australia
"If you are the best team you have got to perform in [all types of] conditions but we are just doing well in the UAE.
"We were lucky that the ball didn't swing much in England [where Pakistan drew a Test series 2-2 earlier this year], otherwise the result would have been the same there too."
Reflecting on Pakistan's performance in Brisbane so far, Abbas added: "I say with great regret that we were neither up to the mark with batting nor with bowling and we also dropped a lot of catches and did not appeal for dismissals on some occasions.
"We just failed to perform in all the three departments of the game."
Pakistan batsman Asad Shafiq attempted to strike a more positive note at the end of day three at the Gabba, after Azhar Ali and Younis Khan made it through to the close on 41 and nought respectively.
"We are taking the game step-by-step, hour-by-hour," said Shafiq.
"We are hopeful of getting some more partnerships. We came from the UAE where the wickets are very different, so it's a good challenge."