Full name Michael William Gatting
Born June 6, 1957, Kingsbury, Middlesex
Current age 58 years 57 days
Major teams England, Middlesex
Also known as Gatt
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
Other Coach, Commentator
|Test debut||Pakistan v England at Karachi, Jan 18-23, 1978 scorecard|
|Last Test||Australia v England at Perth, Feb 3-7, 1995 scorecard|
|ODI debut||Pakistan v England at Sahiwal, Dec 23, 1977 scorecard|
|Last ODI||Sri Lanka v England at Moratuwa, Mar 20, 1993 scorecard|
|First-class span||1975 - 1998|
|List A span||1975 - 1998|
For two decades, it was a sight as characteristic of Lord's as Father Time himself: Mike Gatting, with jutting beard and strutting gait, biffing the ball past extra cover for Middlesex or England. If a spinner was bowling, he probably wouldn't be on long: "Gatt" murdered spinners. Squat and tubby, he never looked a sportsmen from a distance, though at close quarters his oak-tree forearms gave a clue. He was a natural, a point recognised by the selectors when they sent him on tour as a 20-year-old, in 1977-78. But it would take seven more years, and 54 Test innings, before he made a hundred. In the meantime, he batted every position except first violin. Finally, he reached maturity with 136 in adversity at Bombay, an innings of such guts that the British press broke its rule and applauded. Then there was no stopping him.
His captaincy - the job came a year later - had a bristling quality, like his batting. But the triumph of the surprise Ashes win in 1986-87 was followed later that year by his argument with the Pakistani umpire Shakoor Rana - routine in most sports, shocking in cricket - which reverberated round the world. Gatting's bristling had got the better of him. It took six months for Gatting to be sacked, and then it was ostensibly (and ludicrously) because of an alleged sexual encounter with a barmaid. The selectors wanted him back in 1989 but their choice was vetoed; Gatting, in pique and sadness, took a rebel team to South Africa instead and the captaincy never came back to him. He had a sense of fair play and not much subtlety; he suffered for being a straightforward man in a game run by dissemblers.
Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1984
Walter Lawrence Trophy 1984
Middlesex coach 1999-2000
What makes this innocuous-seeming bowler so difficult to handle?