There have been a million and one excuses offered as to why Australia lost the first Test in the Ashes series.
The DRS. Michael Clarke’s misuse of the DRS. The Australian top order’s failure to post big runs. Ed Cowan. Stuart Broad being a twat. The list goes on and on. But we’re missing the point.
At the moment England is in the middle of a sporting renaissance. Finally they are winning everything. Olympics. Lions. Murray. You name it.
The nation’s confidence may be sky-high, but as we all know, somewhere behind this new-found English bravado lies an Englishman’s soft, pale and flabby underbelly. It’s just a matter of exposing this flaccid paunch and striking it firmly and repeatedly with a sharp object.
Having watched the first Test, it’s quite easy to see where England’s vulnerabilities lie: they are toffy-nosed little pansies with thin, hairless forearms and elite private school haircuts.
Just look at them. With the exception of South African Jonathan Trott, they look like a bunch of failed Abercrombie and Fitch models or worse yet, the cast of Newington College’s production of Rent.
One scribe even went as far as to liken Joe Root to a 14 year old gay woman and perhaps more kindly, to a boyish Kurt Gidley.
Having now identified England’s weakness, the Australians need to strike with a proportionate dose of its opposite.
We need players who look tough, are tough, and have big, hairy forearms that generate runs.
We need Simon Katich.
Coming fresh off a knock of 200 in English county cricket, the man known as ‘Katto’ would provide Australia with the perfect foil to lance the English boil.
He’s a fighter. He’s hard as nails. He gets dirty. He gets runs. He doesn’t get out cheaply. And he’s arguably one of the best Croatian-Australian athletes of all-time (alongside Mark Viduka and Andrew Vlahov).
In this writer’s eyes, Katich proved his credentials not with a gritty match-winning second-innings knock against Pakistan in Sydney in 2010 but when he collared a young Bonds-ad-era Michael Clarke in the dressing room after a match in 2009 (this event has been wonderfully recounted by the Public Apology in its acclaimed series “The Choke”)
Some may think this episode, and more recently Katto’s public criticism of Clarke, has ruled out any chance he has of playing Test cricket again, and it well may have, but with the second Test (and Australia’s success as a nation) on the line, for the good of the country it’s time to bury the hatchet and bring Simon Katich back into the team.
We need his strong, hairy forearms.
Speaking of which, the man with the strongest and hairiest forearms to ever play cricket just scored 169 not out in county cricket.
Any chance we can convince Ricky to have one final dance?