Notts in buoyant mood ahead of Derbyshire clash

Paul Franks. (Photo: Mark Fear Photography)
Paul Franks. (Photo: Mark Fear Photography)
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Nottinghamshire face local rivals Derbyshire this weekend in their latest match in the Specsavers County Championship, with the action beginning at Trent Bridge on Friday morning.

The hosts currently sit at the top of the second division table, having won four and drawn one of their first five matches. That represents Nottinghamshire’s best start since 2007, the last time that they were in the lower tier.

But Paul Franks, the county’s assistant head coach, believes it is too early to start looking too far ahead.

“We are in good shape right now,” he said. “We’ve just got to keep playing well. We’ve sustained some really good form over five games and it would be really nice for me to say that we were going to ‘do this’ or ‘do that’ but I can’t.”

Franks added, “All I can say is we’re going to come in each day and prepare well to play against Derbyshire on Friday. That’s what we’ve been trying to do for each game and we’ll try and continue doing the same things.”

Notts bounced back from a frustrating draw against Glamorgan to defeat Gloucestershire inside three days last weekend and Franks said the focus has immediately switched to the next opponents.

“We’ve got an opportunity to kick on from that win now,” said the former all-rounder. “We’ve got another home game coming up, which is a good thing for us because we know how to play well in our home conditions, we’ve proved that over the years.

“It is a great start for us but it’s very much a ‘one game at a time’ cycle right now. We knew this block of games was going to be very important for us. We’ve got six games in a row and we’re going to be coming up against six different challenges.

“Fatigue is bound to set in at some point, so we have to manage that effectively as well.”

Stuart Broad will miss the next couple of matches, with the ECB managing his workload ahead of the forthcoming Test summer.

“We know we are going to be without Stuart for a few games,” confirmed Franks. “We knew that well in advance, so it gives an opportunity for someone else to come into the team and perform well.

“The good thing is, whoever comes in, will come into a team that is performing well, so we should go into the Derbyshire game with a lot of confidence.”