Second Ashes tour spurs Katich
Simon Katich, Australia's most recent batting addition, is determined to make a regular mark in the side he has been trying to stay in since the 2001 Ashes tour. Playing one Test at Headingley as Steve Waugh's replacement, Katich made 15 and 0 and this time wants to show England his true value.
"I have always got a point to prove because people here haven't really seem me play apart from in county cricket," he told the Courier-Mail. "At Test level I haven't done anything really. I enjoyed it [in England] last time but hopefully I will have a few better results."
Katich has been given 15 Tests since his 2001 debut and sealed his spot for the short-term in New Zealand when he finished the series with 188 runs at 62.67. Despite a successful tour of India, where he played the four Tests, he was dropped for the entire Australian summer, and recalled when Darren Lehmann's career was ended.
The Ashes Tests are set down for the second half of the summer when the wickets will be harder and drier, and Katich said Australia had been looked after "pretty well" by the program. "We've spoken about the fact that the schedule suits us, but we also realise that the ECB have got their reasons for scheduling things a certain way," Katich said in the Sydney Morning Herald. "It doesn't stuff us around too much with travelling."
Graham Gooch, the former England captain, thought the itinerary was a gift for Australia because their opponents had no first-class matches between the one-day series and the opening Test at Lord's, where Australia haven't lost since 1934. "It's a bit of an advantage to Australia to play at the back end of the season," he said. "Shane Warne will be happy with that. If you had to choose a schedule, it doesn't get much better for them, and it's fair to say Australia don't need any outside help. Their record speaks for itself."