Franklin chases big prize in England

BIG PRIZE: James Franklin of Essex plays a drive.
BIG PRIZE: James Franklin of Essex plays a drive.

James Franklin's English county stint has been extended after his Essex team snuck into the Twenty20 quarterfinals.

The contracted New Zealand all-rounder was excused from the limited overs segment of the current West Indies tour to play for Essex and prepare for the Twenty20 World Cup starting in Sri Lanka in September.

Franklin had moderate success from nine matches in the preliminary rounds. He scored 244 runs at 30.50 and strike rate of 112, with a highest score of 78. With the ball he bowled just 16 overs, taking three wickets at 44.66 and economy rate of 8.37.

A washout in their final match against Hampshire saw Essex snare a crucial competition point and sneak into the final eight as one of the two best third-placed sides in their pool. Wellington's other English county player, Jeetan Patel, was less fortunate as his Warwickshire team missed out on the final eight by a whisker.

Patel took five wickets at 35.20 and economy rate of 7.59 from eight Twenty20 matches. His numbers in the four-day county championship have been better as Warwickshire sit second behind Nottinghamshire on the division one ladder. In seven matches, the offspinner has 22 wickets at 23.00, including two five-wicket bags and best innings figures of 6-95.

Meanwhile, former New Zealand all-rounder Scott Styris will also feature in the Twenty20 quarterfinals with Sussex. They had just one defeat in group play with Styris scoring 96 runs at 32.00 with a strike rate of 155, and with the ball took three wickets at 21.33 and economy rate of 6.50.

Contact Mark Geenty
Deputy sports editor

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