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Page last updated at 11:48 GMT, Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Fraser hopeful of first signing

Angus Fraser
Former England seamer Fraser started work at Middlesex this week

Middlesex's new managing director of cricket Angus Fraser is hopeful of signing a batsman for the 2009 season.

The 43-year-old, who played 290 games for Middlesex, officially began work at Lord's on Tuesday and is already striving to improve the squad.

Fraser told BBC London 94.9: "Nothing has been signed yet but I think we've got a nice young batsman who has got a very encouraging future in the game.

"I'm excited by the prospect of him playing at the start of the season."

He added: "Our policy has changed in the last two weeks.

"The Indian Premier League takes away the majority, if not all, of the world's big cricketers and most of them only become available at the end of May.

"My view was that it was pointless getting someone involved who may not add to your team.

"That was assuming that we'd have Andrew Strauss for a bit of the season and Owais Shah, but if you look at that now I don't think we're going to see a great deal of them.

"I hope we don't because that means they're playing for England and the dual objective of someone like myself is to produce a Middlesex side that's challenging for trophies and playing high quality cricket, but also to produce England cricketers.

"Every England cricketer that Middlesex produce is a huge bonus for the county but that also means you need strength in depth.

"The last week or so I've been on the phone trying to find a good batsman to come in and prop us up at the start of the season.

"We've spoken to a few people but I'd rather not say at this moment in time."

Fraser made 46 Test appearances for England and played in 290 first-class games for Middlesex before retiring in 2002.

He took up the role of cricket correspondent at the Independent newspaper as well working in the broadcast media on BBC Radio's Test Match Special but says this was an opportunity that he could not turn his back on.

Last year's Twenty20 Cup was the club's first trophy for 15 years and for a club like Middlesex that's too long a gap

Angus Fraser
"There's a genuine desire to help the club move forward. Last year's success in the Twenty20 Cup was magnificent," he said.

"It was the club's first trophy for 15 years and for a club like Middlesex that's too long a gap.

"There's a desire to get in there and help return it to competing for trophies every year.

"Ultimately it's my job to appoint captains and appoint coaches and to get the right people involved to take Middlesex forward.

"I'll be hands on and watching Middlesex's cricket, and it would be foolish not to get involved in the development of young bowlers who I watch bowling every day.

"It's not going to be a track-suited position but I'm there for players and coaches to talk to, should there be issues."

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see also
Fraser excited by Middlesex role
26 Oct 08 |  Cricket
Middlesex agree terms with Fraser
25 Oct 08 |  Middlesex
Middlesex win thrilling Cup final
26 Jul 08 |  Counties
Fraser to retire
10 Apr 02 |  Middlesex

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