But when Starc claimed Babar Azam in the 31st over, Mohammad Hafeez (72 from 104) went just eight balls later to the bowling of Faulkner - with Hazlewood taking the catch for both wickets - and a familiar Pakistan collapse looked like materialising.
After returning from the wilderness and leading Pakistan to their first away win over Australia for 12 years, Mohammad Hafeez claims he never feared for his worldwide career.
Mohammad Hafeez, who has returned to the Pakistan ODI set-up after his inclusion was requested by captain Azhar Ali and coach Mickey Arthur, also joined the team.
Azhar Ali leads a Pakistan one-day team that has lost its last six matches against Australia.
While the lifeless pitch played its part to blunt the punch of Australia's fast men, credit must be given to Pakistan's batsmen, who, led by stand-in skipper Hafeez, showed the mettle lacking in their Test play. In addition to watching the match live on stream, we also have a real-time Live Score Widget, in addition to other facilities like Time, Squads, TV Listing etc. Pakistan need 81 more runs to win from the last 19 overs.
Wade took control of the innings after Maxwell's dismissal and was only able to reach triple figures after some comical running between the wickets with Australia's tail-enders. In contrast, the hosts, having not picked leggie Adam Zampa, hardly used Travis Head's part-time spin until the game was gone.
Promoted left-arm quick Junaid Khan removed David Warner (16 from 22 balls) and Usman Khawaja (17 from 21) in consecutive overs to put Australia on the back foot at 2/40.
Maxwell was at his quirky best with reverse sweeps and improvised stroke-making in his 60 off 56 balls with seven boundaries before he was out to a false shot.
Smith said his batsmen, with the exception of Wade in Brisbane, had been "pretty ordinary" in the first two ODIs.
"Our bowlers really did the job for us, because that was really important, to restrict Australia [to] under a score where we as a batting unit [could] chase that", Hafeez said. "We kept the pressure on and that really worked for us".