Kato fell in love with the game in 1991 when his mother told him to join her in front of the television to watch Chris Lewis and Derek Pringle add 92 for the ninth wicket in a hopeless cause against the West Indies at Birmingham.

In the next test, Phil Tufnell famously took six for 25 at the Oval and the sight of all the "Tufnell"s lined up on the television scorecard was the most beautiful thing Kato had ever seen.

He started playing on and off, but too late to be picked for his school team, so he qualified as an umpire in 1995 and joined the Alleyn and Honor Oak Cricket Club, founding its social side, the Adhoc XI, in 1997.

Twelve years on he is still captain of the Adhoc XI and is now Chairman of the Club. On weekdays, he teaches at a north London school for girls, where he keeps himself busy putting together a cricket team of enthusiastic girls, one of whom apparently "has an action to rival Statham". Which is more than can be said for Kato, whose peculiar mix of right-arm-round and Icelandic sledging has far from caught on around the south London club circuit.

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