New Zealand news July 4, 2011

James Franklin bitter over axing

ESPNcricinfo staff
31

James Franklin, the New Zealand allrounder, is shocked at missing out on a central contract after what he felt was a strong summer in the national side. Franklin, 30, was last week left out of the 20-man contract list for the second year in a row, and he said he was disappointed after playing all three formats for New Zealand over the past six months.

"I can't change what they have done," Franklin told the Dominion Post. "This is a tough one. Last year I was half expecting it, but this one has come out of the blue and I'm a bit bitter. In my last 14 one-day innings I've averaged 54, but they've made their decision. To miss out entirely on a Test ranking is a hard one for me to fathom. I feel I have a huge amount to offer in the longer form of the game."

The national selection manager, Mark Greatbatch, said Franklin was unlucky to miss out, and while his best performances were excellent, he did not display the sort of consistency New Zealand wanted. Franklin conceded he didn't have impact he would have liked at the World Cup, coming on the back of an outstanding series against India in December.

"If I pinpoint anything I didn't do, which I wanted to do, it was my World Cup performances," Franklin said. "But there were a couple of early games when I didn't get a bat or bowl so I suddenly felt I had no form. Because it was a World Cup, it got microscoped a fair bit and that seemed to be the last point of memory in terms of sorting out contracts."

One of the factors highlighted by Greatbatch was Franklin's disappointing bowling in recent times. Although he began his international career as a bowler who could bat, Franklin has become more of a batting allrounder and he believes that is an area that he needs to work on.

"There is stuff to tidy up in my bowling - there is no two ways in that," he said. "My stats say I'm a good first-class bowler but that hasn't always been the case at the next level. I need to get the venom back I had four to five years ago when I was in the mid to high 130s."

He also said his passive exterior - he is not the kind of bowler who shows serious aggression towards a batsman - should not be held against him. "People have been going on about that for years," he said. "I remember one of the selectors saying that years ago. I am what I am. I'm not a 21-year-old, I'm 30, I've played a bit now.

"There are things to tidy up in my game but the cop-out of being angry and all that stuff is not who I am. I like to win and do well but getting in someone's face and showing anger is a cop-out. I don't need to do that - that is not me."

Last year, Franklin considered using his Irish passport to become a local player in county cricket, but the lure of playing in a World Cup stopped him from taking that path. Again this year he is reluctant to turn his back on New Zealand while hopes of an international comeback remain.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • HotJon on July 7, 2011, 12:55 GMT

    Franklin is more consistent than Oram these days. Jimmy's always been a favourite and yes he is inconsistent, but come on, who in the Caps other than DLV and Chris Martin isn't?

  • on July 6, 2011, 8:47 GMT

    South Africa Is Coming To Test New Zealand In New Zealand Cricket Season,These Selector Should Not Do Too Much Experiment With The Team,If They Want To Outperform South Africa.

  • on July 5, 2011, 11:11 GMT

    these days i would take franklin over oram .. and with styris retiring there was probably a case for a senior guy like franklin in the middle order ..

  • on July 5, 2011, 4:35 GMT

    Why is the selectors expecting a batsman to bowl and a bowler to bat, then they should pick 10 all rounders for a match with a keeper. Franklin by far the best NZ batsman in the current NZ team. Taylor isn't in good form. Brendon had a poor WC. So Franklin should be playing.

  • Mr.Lock on July 4, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    Greatbatch at best was an average player himself,now he is telling people they are not good . To support that argument, consider statement of Imran Khan, the 92 world cup winner. When asked about his game against Kiwis, he said "New Zea land had a very good batsman in Martin Crowe but no one else was any good". This includes Greatbatch who was on his purple patch during the cup, so sir, please stop kicking out good players for nothing. James should be included in all formats as he has proven himself to be good.

  • bc1992 on July 4, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    Come on Greatbatch, seriously?!?!?! Luke Woodcock is deserving of a contract over James Franklin? How many games is Woodcock going to play ahead of Nathan McCullum in limited overs cricket? What a joke! We all know that Franklin has flattered to deceive many times over his career - he used to have pace and swing and now is really no better than a third or fourth change bowler, but his batting has loads of potential. Just look back at the games he played prior to the World Cup for the evidence. If he's missed out on the basis of his World Cup form then Brendon McCullum must be on his way to the local Lotto shop - take out the 177 runs he scored against Zimbabwe and Canada and his record was 79 runs in six knocks

  • nzcricket174 on July 4, 2011, 20:00 GMT

    Why does he have to bowl? He obviously is not interested in bowling so why not let him play as a batsman? Have his performances in India last year already been forgotten?

  • plow on July 4, 2011, 19:46 GMT

    I really feel for James Franklin. he is the one selection(non selection) I beleive the selectors have made a mistake with.

    He should be playing, especially in the longer format. For a guy of his talent he should be perservered with. He has only played ONE test in recent times and yet it is the tests we do so poorly at. Perhaps if he played more often we wouldn't be bundled out for 220 every innings.

    Wrong call with this one NZ selectors.. Let James back in, and KEEP him there, he is a quality player.

    This one really frustrates me.

  • on July 4, 2011, 18:34 GMT

    Think its time to move on. This guy has all the potential to be a match winner. Think he should serously think about playing in the county cricket.

  • Japan.Kolla on July 4, 2011, 17:12 GMT

    Yes ! He shud improve his bowling but his batting has came gud recentley. when we concern about new zealand he shud be in da contract list without a doubt. poor selectors.

  • HotJon on July 7, 2011, 12:55 GMT

    Franklin is more consistent than Oram these days. Jimmy's always been a favourite and yes he is inconsistent, but come on, who in the Caps other than DLV and Chris Martin isn't?

  • on July 6, 2011, 8:47 GMT

    South Africa Is Coming To Test New Zealand In New Zealand Cricket Season,These Selector Should Not Do Too Much Experiment With The Team,If They Want To Outperform South Africa.

  • on July 5, 2011, 11:11 GMT

    these days i would take franklin over oram .. and with styris retiring there was probably a case for a senior guy like franklin in the middle order ..

  • on July 5, 2011, 4:35 GMT

    Why is the selectors expecting a batsman to bowl and a bowler to bat, then they should pick 10 all rounders for a match with a keeper. Franklin by far the best NZ batsman in the current NZ team. Taylor isn't in good form. Brendon had a poor WC. So Franklin should be playing.

  • Mr.Lock on July 4, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    Greatbatch at best was an average player himself,now he is telling people they are not good . To support that argument, consider statement of Imran Khan, the 92 world cup winner. When asked about his game against Kiwis, he said "New Zea land had a very good batsman in Martin Crowe but no one else was any good". This includes Greatbatch who was on his purple patch during the cup, so sir, please stop kicking out good players for nothing. James should be included in all formats as he has proven himself to be good.

  • bc1992 on July 4, 2011, 21:01 GMT

    Come on Greatbatch, seriously?!?!?! Luke Woodcock is deserving of a contract over James Franklin? How many games is Woodcock going to play ahead of Nathan McCullum in limited overs cricket? What a joke! We all know that Franklin has flattered to deceive many times over his career - he used to have pace and swing and now is really no better than a third or fourth change bowler, but his batting has loads of potential. Just look back at the games he played prior to the World Cup for the evidence. If he's missed out on the basis of his World Cup form then Brendon McCullum must be on his way to the local Lotto shop - take out the 177 runs he scored against Zimbabwe and Canada and his record was 79 runs in six knocks

  • nzcricket174 on July 4, 2011, 20:00 GMT

    Why does he have to bowl? He obviously is not interested in bowling so why not let him play as a batsman? Have his performances in India last year already been forgotten?

  • plow on July 4, 2011, 19:46 GMT

    I really feel for James Franklin. he is the one selection(non selection) I beleive the selectors have made a mistake with.

    He should be playing, especially in the longer format. For a guy of his talent he should be perservered with. He has only played ONE test in recent times and yet it is the tests we do so poorly at. Perhaps if he played more often we wouldn't be bundled out for 220 every innings.

    Wrong call with this one NZ selectors.. Let James back in, and KEEP him there, he is a quality player.

    This one really frustrates me.

  • on July 4, 2011, 18:34 GMT

    Think its time to move on. This guy has all the potential to be a match winner. Think he should serously think about playing in the county cricket.

  • Japan.Kolla on July 4, 2011, 17:12 GMT

    Yes ! He shud improve his bowling but his batting has came gud recentley. when we concern about new zealand he shud be in da contract list without a doubt. poor selectors.

  • jigish.patel on July 4, 2011, 16:29 GMT

    As someone mentioned, he has done so much better than a lot of players on the contract list. His performances in recent past merit more leeway and he should be supported to the hilt.

  • boris6491 on July 4, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    It seems that both the trans-Tasman rivals, Australia and NZ, two teams in decline, seem to be hoping to reverse their poor form by making decisions with their eyes closed rather than with proper assessment. This decision is quite similar to Katich's ousting, plain and simply put, it makes no sense. In both Katich and Franklin's case, they both may not have set the world on fire over the past 12 months but cricket is a relative game and there is no doubt that both players have outperformed their teammates during this time period. With that in mind, there is little basis for dropping both of them from the contract list for this year. Similar to Katich as well, Franklin is seemingly being thrown out based on a single average series performance, which is just ridiculous. Rather than having a game plan, both boards are poking at thin air trying to gain success. To both boards, if you want to reinvigorate your teams, toughen up, but don't make baseless decisions.

  • OrgiaMode on July 4, 2011, 13:39 GMT

    Oh ok I'm understanding Greatbatch's logic a bit more now. He wanted someone more consistant than Franklin, and I don't think anyone is more consistant at anything than Neil Broom is at being terrible.

  • venkatSan on July 4, 2011, 13:15 GMT

    He is the last bench warmer..nothing to get surprised about the exclusion :-)... despite the fact that John is there to stir the already unstable Kiwi cricket...James Franklin exclusion must not be a surprise for himself.

  • on July 4, 2011, 12:39 GMT

    We need a experience in middle order. Why the selectors cant consider him as batsman? There is heaps of examples in history cricket. One is ICC match referee Ranjan Madugalle. Joined the team as a bowler and retained the place as batsman. Then why cant Franklin? Dont waste his talent. He can play another 4 to 5 years easily.

  • on July 4, 2011, 12:31 GMT

    He should have consider as a batsman. The performance he showed in India. Have the selectors forgotten all those? How many players in the world join the team as a bowler and retained the place as a batsman? ICC match referee Ranjan Mudugalla is one of them. Imran Khan final days of his career played as a batsman.Then why cant he?

  • chilling on July 4, 2011, 12:14 GMT

    Franklin me boy i think you should really play with the Irish boys, i really don't know what New Zealand want, but tell u want if they continue like that then they r in trouble, they will become like the West Indies right now. good luck

  • chrismo on July 4, 2011, 12:13 GMT

    Deserved a spot, one of the best players over the year..In India he was the only player who performed in the one dayers.. having a run of 72* 98* 17*(india) and 62*(pakistan) pretty sure no one else in NZ team had that good a run in the one dayers last season.. Players who should not have got a contract ahead of Franklin - Trent Boult, Neil Broom, Daniel Flynn, BJ Watling , Rob Nicol..

  • on July 4, 2011, 11:49 GMT

    NZ is going for the future

  • on July 4, 2011, 11:07 GMT

    I'm a Warwickshire fan in England. A few years ago, we had to put up with Greatbatch as our team coach. The man's a joke! Things got so bad at one point during the season that his policy towards batting order was, whoever makes it to the door next, is next in!

  • anver777 on July 4, 2011, 10:53 GMT

    On behalf of cricket lovers i request NZCB to reconsider the matter of Franklin..... We all know.. a gifted cricketer like JF can do wonders for NZ cricket if selected !!!

  • on July 4, 2011, 10:40 GMT

    its an utter disgrace James Franklin has been denied a N Z contract. After an outstanding series in ipl including a man of the match performance he deserved to be above Jacob Oram in the pecking order With due respect to the players given contracts how many have performed better than Franklin last season. Its time Greatbach was dropped and someone appointed who recognises talent. My heart goes out to Franklin but i know he will overcome yet another setback in his long and successful career. Go James stick it to them.

  • on July 4, 2011, 9:46 GMT

    That my dear Watson ..... is a terrible decision ... one they [NZ] might rue with the up-coming matches in Australia

  • HawK89 on July 4, 2011, 9:42 GMT

    average player with bat and ball, already 30 as well. Time for new young players along with the new captain. NZ needs to focus on proper batsmen and proper bowlers, enough of being average at both. If they don't start with new players now, they will be in the same hole they were in the past few years.

  • Mob_King on July 4, 2011, 9:27 GMT

    It's a real shame. I wouldn't blame him if he joined the Marshall bros over with the O'Brien bros @Ireland -- add in a few more fighters, and that is a Test team that could compete.

  • gothetaniwha on July 4, 2011, 8:50 GMT

    How in the hell did Woodcock get a contract ahead of Franklin , as if we needed another 32 year old spinner ,what value is he , we never use two spinners in Tests or ODIs on NZ pitches ,Vettori test spinner , Mccullum odi 20/20 spinner , and we have backup with Rob Nicol ,and afar better batsmen , and now Styris has retired - Franklin is a ready made replacement on form , nowdays he a batsmen who bowls abit and if the NZ selectors gave him a decent run he batting stats would improve , Mumbai Indians finally realized his value , Methinks its time to get rid of Greatbatch .

  • iwantmore on July 4, 2011, 8:25 GMT

    I agree with you jabberwockynz, I've never felt Franklin as a game breaker but in the last few series he's been the guy hanging in there when all the top order batters were made to look like park cricketers. And I'm pretty sure he bowled Herschelle Gibbs off the first ball of a game once, I don't care what you say...that's pretty legit.

    If you read this James, you're only 30, smash it this season and you'll be back.

  • lonsharim on July 4, 2011, 8:17 GMT

    It's a surprise for sure. He came back strongly during the ODI series against India with 2 or3 good knocks in the lower middle order. That performance also got him the world cup berth. This was after the abysmal performance of the kiwis against Bangladesh when he was drafted in the team.

    If the central contracts are based on who makes the Test grades then perhaps they have a point, if marginal. His bowling will no longer demolish batting teams but his value as a batting all rounder seems to have been ignored.

  • on July 4, 2011, 7:59 GMT

    No prob buddy u'll earn from ipl lyk gayle..

  • jabberwockynz on July 4, 2011, 7:38 GMT

    non selection of franklin is a farce. i havnt been a vocal supporter of franklin in the past, but his form over the past 12 months is miles ahead of most of the guys selected in the central contract list. oram shouldnt have been given a weighting in one dayers or tests as he always breaks down...........poor from NZ selectors

  • petz on July 4, 2011, 6:19 GMT

    its tooo hard............................such a god player been left out. pitty you newzeland........................

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  • petz on July 4, 2011, 6:19 GMT

    its tooo hard............................such a god player been left out. pitty you newzeland........................

  • jabberwockynz on July 4, 2011, 7:38 GMT

    non selection of franklin is a farce. i havnt been a vocal supporter of franklin in the past, but his form over the past 12 months is miles ahead of most of the guys selected in the central contract list. oram shouldnt have been given a weighting in one dayers or tests as he always breaks down...........poor from NZ selectors

  • on July 4, 2011, 7:59 GMT

    No prob buddy u'll earn from ipl lyk gayle..

  • lonsharim on July 4, 2011, 8:17 GMT

    It's a surprise for sure. He came back strongly during the ODI series against India with 2 or3 good knocks in the lower middle order. That performance also got him the world cup berth. This was after the abysmal performance of the kiwis against Bangladesh when he was drafted in the team.

    If the central contracts are based on who makes the Test grades then perhaps they have a point, if marginal. His bowling will no longer demolish batting teams but his value as a batting all rounder seems to have been ignored.

  • iwantmore on July 4, 2011, 8:25 GMT

    I agree with you jabberwockynz, I've never felt Franklin as a game breaker but in the last few series he's been the guy hanging in there when all the top order batters were made to look like park cricketers. And I'm pretty sure he bowled Herschelle Gibbs off the first ball of a game once, I don't care what you say...that's pretty legit.

    If you read this James, you're only 30, smash it this season and you'll be back.

  • gothetaniwha on July 4, 2011, 8:50 GMT

    How in the hell did Woodcock get a contract ahead of Franklin , as if we needed another 32 year old spinner ,what value is he , we never use two spinners in Tests or ODIs on NZ pitches ,Vettori test spinner , Mccullum odi 20/20 spinner , and we have backup with Rob Nicol ,and afar better batsmen , and now Styris has retired - Franklin is a ready made replacement on form , nowdays he a batsmen who bowls abit and if the NZ selectors gave him a decent run he batting stats would improve , Mumbai Indians finally realized his value , Methinks its time to get rid of Greatbatch .

  • Mob_King on July 4, 2011, 9:27 GMT

    It's a real shame. I wouldn't blame him if he joined the Marshall bros over with the O'Brien bros @Ireland -- add in a few more fighters, and that is a Test team that could compete.

  • HawK89 on July 4, 2011, 9:42 GMT

    average player with bat and ball, already 30 as well. Time for new young players along with the new captain. NZ needs to focus on proper batsmen and proper bowlers, enough of being average at both. If they don't start with new players now, they will be in the same hole they were in the past few years.

  • on July 4, 2011, 9:46 GMT

    That my dear Watson ..... is a terrible decision ... one they [NZ] might rue with the up-coming matches in Australia

  • on July 4, 2011, 10:40 GMT

    its an utter disgrace James Franklin has been denied a N Z contract. After an outstanding series in ipl including a man of the match performance he deserved to be above Jacob Oram in the pecking order With due respect to the players given contracts how many have performed better than Franklin last season. Its time Greatbach was dropped and someone appointed who recognises talent. My heart goes out to Franklin but i know he will overcome yet another setback in his long and successful career. Go James stick it to them.