Chappell-Hadlee Series December 6, 2005

Katich battles to seal opening berth

Cricinfo staff

Simon Katich opened the three-match contest with a useful half-century © Getty Images

Simon Katich has vowed to find greater consistency in an effort to hold his place at the top of Australia's one-day side. Under pressure after losing his Test berth last month, Katich is also battling to keep his spot as opener with the specialists Matthew Hayden and Phil Jaques performing consistently this season.

With Adam Gilchrist guaranteed one slot whenever he plays, Katich made a promising international return at Auckland on Saturday with 54 from 65 balls, but he has stopped making plans for the 2007 World Cup. "I haven't thought that far ahead," he said in The Australian. "I will hopefully have a good week here and see what happens for the rest of the summer.

"I guess I just have to be consistent and get bigger scores. The top guys get the best opportunity to build an innings and get a big score so hopefully that's something I can do in this next period."

Katich was dropped from the Test team following the first match against West Indies after averaging only 17 in five matches."It's been disappointing over the past four or five months, particularly in England," Katich said. "Then it all built on me at the start of the summer at home. Hopefully now I can go back to state cricket and play as well as I can and just keep chipping away."