New Zealand v Australia, 2nd Test, Hamilton, 1st day

Consistent Katich chases bigger scores

Brydon Coverdale in Hamilton

March 27, 2010

Comments: 5 | Text size: A | A

Simon Katich works the ball on the legside, New Zealand v Australia, 2nd Test, Hamilton, 1st day, March 27, 2010
Simon Katich: "The disappointing thing throughout the summer is not so much getting out in the 90s, but not going on when I felt set" © Getty Images
Enlarge

Simon Katich is nothing if not consistent. The 88 that he scored on the first day in Hamilton continued a summer of very good scores for Katich without a big century; six times he has been out from 79 to 99 and once he sneaked to 100 before he was dismissed.

Without his contribution at Seddon Park, Australia's disappointing opening day could have been disastrous. Concentration was required from the batsmen on a surface without much pace, but Shane Watson, Michael Clarke and Brad Haddin were all undone by their desire to attack while Ricky Ponting committed himself to an aggressive run that he couldn't make.

Katich's application got him through the new ball and allowed him to tick the score over at a reasonable rate without taking risks and it was an approach that his team-mates could have copied. However, he defended his colleagues who were caught going hard at the bowling and said impressive New Zealand bowling and the difficult pitch played a part.

"It was probably a little bit slower than the one in Wellington," Katich said. "I think it was probably more the fact that New Zealand stuck to their game plans, shut things down as long as they could. A couple of wickets fell to balls stopping in the wicket so hopefully we can use that to our advantage when we bowl. As the game goes on it'll be interesting to see if the pitch deteriorates or whether it gets better."

Most of Katich's runs came before the 41st over, when the umpires changed the ball, and he said the new one swung more and was harder to handle. Four wickets each to Tim Southee, who found some impressive shape, and Daniel Vettori, restricted Australia to 231 and it was well below what they had expected to post when Ponting won the toss.

"There wasn't a huge amount of spin in the wicket but there was enough variation and pace and bounce," Katich said of Vettori. "He used it to his advantage, he always uses the breeze well. His captaincy was excellent, he kept changing things around, short spells for the bowlers and different plans for our batsmen."

Katich was one of the Vettori victims, caught at silly point while walking across and trying to clip the ball to leg. He hasn't scored a first-innings century since the opening Test of the Ashes in Cardiff and is keen to produce a match-winning hundred sooner rather than later.

"Today was one of those things," he said. "I was looking to get to tea and unfortunately I made an error of judgment and paid the price. The disappointing thing throughout the summer is not so much getting out in the 90s, but not going on when I felt set, getting a big hundred. Once you get a hundred you're still going to be disappointed to get out for 110. It's more about not converting those starts into big hundreds which is probably more of a frustration."

His annoyance at himself eased when Doug Bollinger struck in the first over of New Zealand's innings and the hosts realised that their own batting effort would be tough going. There were no more breakthroughs but at 19 for 1, New Zealand hadn't quite made the start they had hoped for and Katich was confident Australia could turn things around on the second day.

"The key for us tomorrow is to be patient," he said. "We got one wicket. It would have been nice to get one or two more. Hopefully in the morning we'll be able to come out with that new ball and still do some more damage. The Kiwis were patient and kept chipping away at us and it worked. We're going to have to do a bit of that ourselves."

Brydon Coverdale is a staff writer at Cricinfo

RSS Feeds: Brydon Coverdale

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Sabmac on (March 27, 2010, 22:05 GMT)

Katich is an insurance plan: If the Aussie batting line up fails as a whole, he'll often be the one who makes a decent score.

Posted by Dale-Edwards on (March 27, 2010, 21:10 GMT)

Katich is an inspiration to the cricket world. He has battled through the tough times to become one of the finest batsmen in the world. Just shows you that hard work and a never give up attitude goes a long way. Congratulations Simon. Aussie cricket needs the gritty, hard as nails,never give up attitude that you provide.

Posted by MB81 on (March 27, 2010, 13:59 GMT)

Intresting hmmm, In 2010 he's scored 296 runs at a average of74 and in the 2009/10 season so far he's scored 698 runs at a average of 63.45. Who cares if he doesn't get a hundred he scoring runs and to be averaging over 50 for a opener is excellent.

Posted by   on (March 27, 2010, 13:39 GMT)

Katich is one of d bzt opener in world 2day!!!!!!!!

Posted by Dan-argent on (March 27, 2010, 13:16 GMT)

Hopefully Katich will also be consistent in the Ashes next winter- except getting out between 7 and 9 rather than 79 and 99.

Comments have now been closed for this article

TopTop
Email Feedback Print
Share
E-mail
Feedback
Print
Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
Tour Results
New Zealand v Australia at Hamilton - Mar 27-31, 2010
Australia won by 176 runs
New Zealand v Australia at Wellington - Mar 19-23, 2010
Australia won by 10 wickets
New Zealand v Australia at Wellington - Mar 13, 2010
New Zealand won by 51 runs
New Zealand v Australia at Auckland - Mar 11, 2010
Australia won by 6 wickets (with 17 balls remaining) (D/L method)
New Zealand v Australia at Hamilton - Mar 9, 2010
Australia won by 6 wickets (with 16 balls remaining)
More results »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days