One of the joys of Broadhalfpenny Down is the characters who visit to play a game of cricket at a venue that has something special.
We were delighted when Rob Franks applied to play for All England XI last year; Rob is an amputee, a former Dorset Disability County Captain who played for England Disability, and is a local Community Officer for the Dorset Cricket Board. He is also one of the nicest blokes to have played at the cradle of cricket.
On the big day against the Hampshire All-Stars, Rob took the prize wicket of Mark Nicholas and was featured fielding in the Gulley in Jack Russell's painting of the match.
Rob has just published his autobiography "From Disability to Ability" which tells his story in an honest and humorous way, from the very first diagnosis in 2011 right up to the present day; from being forced to crowdfund to have his leg amputated and what it took to overcome the struggles of four operations and to eventually play cricket for England (and at Broadhalfpenny Down!).
With a foreword by Michael Atherton, the book is thoroughly recommended and is a valuable contribution to anyone's cricket library.
Collage from Top Left; Rob bowling from the "Wood End" at Broadhalfpenny Down, with Mark Nicholas, With his family as an Olympic Torch Bearer, Playing County Cricket, and his new book.