Melbourne, Feb.16 (ANI): Australian and New South Wales Test opener Simon Katich has credited fate for his amazing comeback to the national squad and to winning the Australia Test Cricketer of The Year award here on Monday.
Katich said he is treasuring every moment of his second chance, and adds that after being dropped from the squad in 2005, sheer grit allowed him to make the climb back among the exalted.
"There's no doubt in 2005, even if you'd asked me, and I'm pretty optimistic, I thought I was gone," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted him, as saying.
"A lot of people gave me that impression, but part of me also never gives up and I guess I was lucky to have a lot of good people around me, who believed I could make it back. Even though the chances were slim, I was 31 at the time (and) at that age generally you don't get another chance, I was fortunate to get a chance when Matty Hayden was injured," he added.
"I made the most of it and I guess it was fate, if he wasn't injured I probably wouldn't have played.
"Every Test I've played since that series, I've just tried to make the most of it and really enjoy it for what it is," Katich said.
He admitted he was "very, very stunned" after getting the award on Monday night at the Allan Border Medal night.
All-rounder Shane Watson won the Alan Border Medal and the award for the best one-day player of the year, two years after his persistent injuries left him briefly considering whether he should stop bowling.
The pair are first-time winners in the three categories, underlining how this is a period of great transition for the national team.
At 34, Katich knows his time in this new era is limited. But everything is a bonus after being dropped in late 2005.
Katich's second chance came during the 2008 tour of the West Indies, when Hayden was forced out with an Achilles tendon problem.
During the first year of his Test exile, Katich had worked with former Australian captain and coach Bob Simpson and said his faith had been crucial.
"In that next phase of six to 12 months, I did a lot of work with Bob," Katich said.
"The confidence that he instilled and the belief he (had) that I could get back there, even though I was 31, that was a huge thing for me," Katich said. (ANI)