MI all-rounder pleased with team’s efforts against RR
By Hoshedar N. Gundevia
Mumbai 12 April 2012
The Mumbai Indians have a plethora of star players at their disposal in IPL 2012. But one rather understated name always seems to make the cut. All-rounder James Franklin started his international career as a left-arm seamer, but has since gone on to add to his skill set by considerably improving his batting.
The southpaw is now a permanent part of the MI set-up. Despite a slow start this season, the 31-year-old is looking to help his team take that necessary step up in terms of quality.
The lanky Kiwi took out time to chat exclusively with iplt20.com after MI‘s 27-run win over the Rajasthan Royals at the Wankhede Stadium. MI are slowly getting things back on track after that loss against Pune Warriors India, aren’t they?
Yeah, it was important that we came out here on our home turf and rectify how we played here last time, which was a very disappointing effort. The way we played tonight was very satisfying. Lasith Malinga is your go-to bowler. What’s it like to have someone like that in your team?
It’s fantastic, I’m sure any team in the IPL would love to have him in their team. It’s great for Mumbai Indians that he is with us. He is great in all four overs that he bowls up front or [at the] death. He is a vital element in our side. Has Harbhajan Singh’s captaincy improved after 2011 CLT20?
It’s been a great experience for him after Sachin [Tendulkar] got injured and he led the side in CLT20 and won it. Tactically he is doing a great job. When Kieron Pollard fires, MI win. How important is he to the side?
He showed today what a world class T20 player he is. He is so destructive and breaks the game wide open. I m sure all the viewers today must have enjoyed watching him bat. MI has a lot of big game players. Do you see that as an advantage over other teams?
Big match players are a little bit of stereotypes; they still got to turn up and do the job. They might be big names but that won’t count if they don’t do their job. I am sure other teams would love to have such players, but we are fortunate enough to have them and [for them to be] doing their job at the moment.
You’ve been at the other end when Ambati Rayudu hit a last-ball six last season and when Rohit Sharma hit a last-ball six against DC this season. Is that a coincidence?
I am not too sure. Maybe I am putting them under little bit of pressure to hit that six of the last ball. It’s nice to be out there, and hopefully, contribute in some way and try finish it. I am lucky enough to be there in a couple of very tight games.