The war between Simon Katich and Michael Clarke is certainly heating up with the Australian captain vehemently laying down his take on the former’s axing and also, laying down the rules as to what it will take for Katich to be considered for Australia again.
Simon Katich was Australia’s most prolific batsman in the past couple of years before he was denied a renewed contract which led to the opener lashing out at the Australian selectors. However, it appears that Katich has renewed his battle, this time taking on none other than the Australian captain in a scathing, unambiguous attack. Michael Clarke though is not taking it lying down.
The Australian captain who took over from Ricky Ponting categorically denied that he had anything do with Katich being axed from the list of the centrally contracted cricketers with the Cricket Australia since at the time he did not hold the powers of selection. It was being speculated at the time that with the obvious change of guard from Ricky Ponting to Clarke, Katich’s age would be a factor as also, the fact that Clarke and Katich shared an unhealthy episode from the past even though they were expected to be professional in the dressing room.
Now with Katich renewing the battle for his selection and directly pointing fingers at Clarke as someone who would have blocked and would continue to block his selection, Clarke did not sidestep the issue and rather after Australia won the ODI series versus South Africa sent a direct warning to Katich that while he may not have been responsible in the past for Katich’s omission, Katich’s outburst would win him no favours. Clarke is obviously keen on building a team that can look up to Clarke as the sole leader in the team and someone with an obvious dissension towards the captain is obviously a threat to his leadership. Clarke seems to be virtually telling Katich he is going to have to work himself back after accusing Clarke if he ever hoped to play for Australia again.
In the meantime, Cricket Australia will conduct its own hearing into Katich’s public tirade against the Australian captain even as Clarke seems more intent on moving on the business of building from the tour of Sri Lanka on the tour of South Africa and further establishing his authority.