The 22-year-old recently earned a place in England’s Test and Twenty20 International squad for New Zealand in November
England pacer Saqib Mahmood has revealed that he was called a ‘terrorist’ on social media, after he was unable to obtain a visa to India earlier this year.
Mahmood was picked for the England Lions tour to India in January, but the visa delays eventually saw him being replaced in the squad by Tom Bailey.
While talking in a BBC’s Stumped podcast, the pacer recalled the abuse he received due to the issue, caused due to his Pakistani heritage.
"All of a sudden I was being called a terrorist and I had not done anything wrong," said Mahmood. "People thought I was plotting something when I was going on a cricket tour. I was getting called not a lot of nice things, hence why I tried to forget about it all."
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The 22-year-old recently earned a place in England’s Test and Twenty20 International squad for a tour to New Zealand in November.
The pacer is still trying to come to terms with the opportunity to represent his country.
"I knew the squad was being announced at two so all morning I was literally just staring at my phone waiting for it to ring,” he said. "I ended up getting the call at twenty to two just as I thought the call was not coming. It was a great feeling - it was almost a too-good-to-be-true feeling."
Mahmood is inspired by former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar and Australia’s right-arm speedster Brett Lee.