Simon Katich and Michael Clarke
Simon Katich (L) and Michael Clarke (AFP Photo)

Simon Katich has revisited his infamous altercation with Michael Clarke when they were Australia teammates.

After the conclusion of a Test match at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in 2009, Katich ended up grabbing Clarke by the throat in the dressing room after he complained of delay in singing of the team song.

Katich has earlier spoken about the incident saying it “bugged” him that Michael Hussey was being rushed into the song. However, Katich lost his cool after the personal nature of remarks directed at him by Clarke.

“There’s been a fair bit said about it, I won’t deny that it happened,” Katich told Australia’s SEN radio. “It was partly to do with the singing of the team song and the pressure that he was putting on Michael Hussey to really get on with it and get on with the night. That probably led to our altercation.”

He added, “But a big part of it from my point of view was what he said to me and the personal nature of what he said.”

While refusing to go into the details of what exactly was said, Katich said he has no regrets of what transpired on that fateful day. “I can’t repeat that on the show unfortunately because I’m sure there are some ladies out there listening. What was said was said and I reacted accordingly. I can’t take that back now. I don’t regret standing up for myself because I certainly wasn’t going to sit there and listen to what he was saying in front of my teammates. I certainly apologised to my teammates for seeing him storm out and not come back for the song later on,” he said.

Katich approached the then Australia captain Ricky Ponting and coach Tim Nielsen immediately after the incident to clarify his stand. “As soon as it happened I spoke to Ricky Ponting and our coach Tim Nielsen about trying to make sure that there wasn’t any issue with it moving forward and Michael assured them and me that wouldn’t be the case.

“But whenever something like that happens to that nature there’s always going to be, I guess, both parties are going to feel that they’re in the right or the wrong. It was a small part of my career. I don’t look back on my career and judge myself on what happened in the dressing room,” Katich said.

The period that saw Clarke taking over as the Australia captain also witnessed the end of Katich’s international career.

The left-hander, who played 56 Tests, 45 ODIs and three T20Is between 2001 and 2006, had hinted why his career ended on an abrupt note. “You don’t have to be Einstein to figure out that it’s not just the selectors that had a part in sending me on my way,” Katich has sad earlier.

However, he does feel hard done by the team management considering his prolific record during that phase of his career. “I understand that’s the way it’s panned out but at the time I was obviously very upset because for those three years — from 2008 to 2010 — I was told by one of the journos that I think only two guys in world cricket had scored more Test runs than me in that period.

“One was the great Sachin Tendulkar and one was (England opener) Alastair Cook who was at the height of his game.

“That was probably the biggest disappointment, that I felt I’d earned my spot in the team over three really consistent years, I think I’d averaged over 50 opening the batting for Australia in those 30-odd Tests that I played.”