Cricket is a sport that has millions of fans whose hearts and souls are connected with it. It is a sport filled with expectations and dreams. However, many times, cricketers experience mental breakdowns. Few express it in media, while many do not.
Conversations about mental health are considered taboo by many, and despite suffering, they do not share it. Nevertheless, few cricketers who had suffered from mental health issues have talked about it. Let us look at some of them.
1. Marcus Trescothick
Marcus Trescothick, a former England team player, was the opener for his team. He was one of those few players who had the courage to speak about his mental health. While his career was at its peak, he battled through depression. In 2006, when he came to India for a cricket tour, he went back in between and disclosed that he was suffering from depression. Later, due to his deteriorating health, he resigned from International Cricket.
2. Jonathan Trott
Jonathan Trott was at his peak in his career when he announced his retirement from all formats. He was establishing himself as one of the finest batsmen from England. During 2013, when Johnathan was playing Ashes, he took a break from cricket and left the Ashes in the middle. He decided to quit in 2013 and stated the reason to be a “long-standing stress-related” condition. He hoped for his comeback in country cricket but did not do well as expected. Later, he resigned even that due to anxiety issues.
3. Sarah Taylor
Sarah Taylor decided to quit cricket due to anxiety issues. In between her career, she had lots of breaks, but finally, she decided to resign when her anxiety started overburdening her.
She was one of the greatest players and has an essential role in winning the ‘T20 2009 World Cup’ and ‘50-over World Cup 2017’. She was considered the backbone of her team.
4. Andrew Flintoff
Andrew Flintoff had a conversation about his mental health problem in BBC Documentary. There was a time in his life when he didn’t even feel like getting up from his bed. The all-rounder of the England cricket team had his worst days when England lost in the 2006-2007 Ashes. After this loss, he gradually surrendered to depression and alcohol. He had disclosed all this by himself in the documentary.
5. Praveen Kumar
Praveen Kumar, a former Indian player was a bowler. At a point in his career, he even confronted how he wanted to end his life. He admitted that he had missed the 2011 World Cup due to personal reasons, and in 2014, he was unsold in the IPL auction. These incidents affected his mental health. But now, after taking medication, his mental health is improving.
6. David Bairstow
David Bairstow, an England cricketer, had also suffered from depression. In the late 90s, he had played 25 international matches. However, due to several reasons, he went through stress and depression. Later, along with depression, he was addicted to alcohol too. With a sad note, finally, he ended his life. Jonny Bairstow is his son.
7. Virat Kohli
One of the finest batsmen on the Indian team was in depression too. In 2014, during his England tour, he had suffered from depression and revealed his mental issues in 2021. After a few not-good matches where he did not score well, he disclosed it to the media. He expressed it as the feeling of being lonely. Later, he took professional help and overcame depression.
8. Glenn Maxwell
Australia’s player Glenn Maxwell revealed how mental breakdown had kept him away from cricket for two months. He took an abrupt break from cricket in 2019 after scoring 28-ball 62 runs against Sri Lanka. He declared that he was undergoing depression. The important thing is that we must understand our mental health and take necessary breaks.
9. Ben Stokes
Ben Stokes is a famous and talented player on the England cricket team. He has taken an indefinite break from all the formats of cricket due to his mental health issues. Many have appreciated him for confessing about his depression and having the courage to take a break. He proved how important mental health is to the body.
10. Mitchelle Johnson
Australian great bowler confronted about his depression after Glenn Maxwell and many others disclosed it. He conveyed that he had dealt with depression throughout his cricket career. On the other hand, cricket had kept his mind active and helped him to deal with his mental issues.