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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 August 2006, 09:34 GMT 10:34 UK
Mahmood dismisses 'traitor' abuse
Sajid Mahmood is congratulated by his England team-mates after taking a wicket on Tuesday
Mahmood was instrumental in England's Test victory
England paceman Sajid Mahmood said he refused to let abuse from sections of the Headingley crowd get him down.

During England's Test victory over Pakistan on Tuesday he was targeted by some fans who accused him of betraying his Pakistani heritage.

"I heard them calling me a traitor during my second spell, but I didn't let it affect me," said Lancashire's Bolton-born fast bowler.

"I didn't really take much of the banter in."

Mahmood claimed 4-22 in the second innings to help England to a 167-run win in the third Test. The emphatic victory gave the hosts an unassailable 2-0 lead in the four-Test series.

After taking one of his wickets Mahmood, whose cousin is boxing sensation Amir Khan, cupped his hand to his ear in response to the abuse he was receiving.

"They gave me a lot of chat down on the boundary and then I got that wicket and did that to see what they had to say then," he said.

I think my dad had some split loyalties but I told him he had to support England during this series
Sajid Mahmood

"Every time I went down to that corner there were a couple clapping and there were a few hurling abuse, so I didn't know what to do.

"They didn't really shut up even after I got a couple of wickets, they just kept going."

Mahmood's finest Test display was witnessed by his brother Rakeb and father Shahid, who was a self-confessed Pakistan fan before his son began playing for England.

"I think my dad had some split loyalties, but I told him he had to support England during this series.

"I didn't hear him shouting anything, but he probably instigated some of the abuse," joked Mahmood.

Shahid Mahmood said only a "handful" were responsible for the barracking and that most Pakistani fans were supportive of his son.

"After the game there were loads and loads of Pakistani fans who wanted photos with him and autographs from him," Shahid told BBC Radio Five Live.

"I wasn't surprised at the stick he was getting because we've seen it before, for example with Kevin Pietersen in South Africa.

"But Pietersen stood strong and showed his character with the bat and quietened them down and Sajid did the identical thing with the ball.

"What I was pleased with was that when a little bit of booing started, the following over the rest of the ground cheered him and drowned out the booing.

"It's not acceptable, but what do you do?"

England triumph to secure series
08 Aug 06 |  England
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08 Aug 06 |  England


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