Katich: Victory will be tough
Surprise bowling hero believes Aussies face huge challenge
By Rachel Griffiths. Last Updated: January 18, 2010 7:42am
Katich: Anticipating tough task
Australia's surprise bowling star Simon Katich believes his team will find it tough to bowl out Pakistan for a second time in the third Test at Bellerive Oval.
"It's still a very good wicket and that is going to be our biggest challenge - leaving ourselves enough time to bowl them out again"
Simon Katich Quotes of the week
Katich secured 3-34 on day three of the final Test as Australian bowled Pakistan out for 301 in reply to their first innings total of 519-8 declared.
However, after Pakistan's last wicket pairing of Umar Gul and Mohammad Asif tired the Australian bowlers out for an extra hour with a last wicket stand of 53, captain Ricky Ponting chose not to enforce the follow-on even though the visitors were over 200 runs behind.
By stumps the home side were 59-1 in their second innings with an overall advantage of 277, but with rain forecast for the remaining two days of the Test and the flat Bellerive wicket having delivered only 19 wickets in three days, Katich believes chances of the Aussies winning their fifth match from six Tests this home summer are slim.
"It's still a very good wicket and that is going to be our biggest challenge - leaving ourselves enough time to bowl them out again," said Katich.
"I think if we had knocked that last wicket over quickly and had a lead of 270 or 280 there might have been a good chance that we were going to be back out their bowling again but the way it's panning out I think there is still plenty of time in the game with two days left and hopefully the weather will hold."
Pakistan were 213-4 at one point on Saturday before Katich brought about a collapse, in which Pakistan lost five for 35, by claiming three wickets in the space of eight overs.
Proving himself again as an important and under-used bowler for Australia, Katich admitted he was surprised by how well he had performed.
"Ricky surprised me through the middle session and basically said I was going to have a bowl so thankfully they came out all right," he said.
Katich revealed injury problems have prevented him from bowling for Australia after bowling frequently in the early phase of his Test career.
"I bowled a bit in England during the Ashes but then I had a few problems with my shoulder early in the summer," added Katich.
"But then thankfully in the Melbourne Test I had it seen to and had an injection in it which has helped enormously since then.
"That sort of eliminated all the pain when I bowl and I have been able to do a bit of preparation as well by bowling two days on the trot here in the nets.
"And that helps you when you can bowl a bit before the game because when you are a part-timer you need all the help you can get."