Paul Franks to join UAE coaching staff

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Paul Franks will spend the next month broadening his coaching horizons by temporarily joining the staff of the United Arab Emirates.

The Nottinghamshire stalwart, who retired from the first class game at the conclusion of the 2015 season but will continue to captain the Second XI, had previously been part of the associate nation’s coacing team at the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup.

Having been invited to return for a four week stint this winter, the 36-year-old is grasping the opportunity to widen his coaching experience.

“It’s about personal development,” he said. “I thoroughly benefited from being involved with them extensively prior to and during the World Cup campaign.

“The opportunity to go back was muted, the Club see the benefits, I certainly see the benefits and it’s something I’m looking forward to.

“It’s branching out a little bit, learning about different conditions and different people and bringing it all back to Trent Bridge.

“We’ve always been encouraged to explore opportunities and the chance to work with a slightly changed group of UAE players from the World Cup is something I’m excited about.”

Franks’ stint in the Emirates will coincide with crucial matches against Hong Kong in the Intercontinental Cup, as well as T20 fixtures against England and the England Lions.

Playing tough and competitive cricket during a time of post World Cup rebuilding represents a significant challenge, and Franks admits the process of getting to know new players will take some time.

“It’s just come out of the cycle of the last World Cup which was very much the end of an era for UAE cricket.

“There were key players, very good players, that retired because they were the wrong side of 40 and couldn’t realistically keep driving it forward.

“It’s very much at the start again, some rebuilding has happened, now they need to hit the ground running where they can and make sure they are learning along the way.

“There has been a turnover of players and the squad now has a younger dynamic.

“Some of the senior cricketers are still there but they’re looking to integrate new players whilst also remaining competitive.

“The first few days will be a fact finding mission on the guys I don’t know, but it didn’t take too long last year and hopefully it won’t this year.

“They need to get up-and-running in the I Cup - and to help the UAE pit themselves against England is definitely something I’m looking forward to.”