Middlesex cricket column: Frank Insight with James Franklin
I’ve always enjoyed playing county cricket – and it becomes even more enjoyable when you get to be part of a winning side.
There were three main factors in my decision to come back to England – the lifestyle suits me and my family and, secondly, I knew that signing for Middlesex would give me the opportunity to play at the home of cricket.
The last and most important point was the players Middlesex had – I could see there was a good balance of experience and emerging talent coming through, so I was really keen to play my part.
It’s been a great start in both formats and it’s particularly exciting that our top order has fired in the way it has during the last two T20 games.
There’s that little bit of belief among the team and I don’t see any reason why we can’t progress through the group phase.
We’ve got to be consistent, but it’s also important to remember you can’t expect to go out and belt 200-plus every time.
For me personally, it was nice to get a little five-for in the bag against Kent – those are rare in T20.
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One of the good things about Eoin leading the T20 side is that I get to bowl more! Sometimes, when I’ve captained my provincial team back in New Zealand, I probably under-bowled myself at times.
So it’s good to have someone else making those decisions. At the same time, though, when Angus Fraser asked me to take over from Adam Voges as captain of the four-day side I said I’d love to do it straight away.
Stephen Fleming was the best captain I’ve played under and Brendon McCullum – who’s now being rightly lauded for the way he’s led New Zealand – is another guy who’s influenced the way I like to do things.
But no two captains are the same – you’ve always got your own way of skinning a cat. What it comes down to is trying to get the best out of a group of guys and hopefully my style can do that.