Of late, a few cricketers, such as Glenn Maxwell, have admitted that they suffered from mental health issues and need a break from the game. It came as a shock to the cricketing world because Maxwell has had been doing well in international cricket. There are a few other cricketers who have reported mental health issues in the past. So, what ails the cricketers despite success, fame and money? Cricwizz takes a look at the possible mental health issues these cricketers go through.
Every cricketer goes through a patch of poor form and that’s when they plunge into serious introspection whether they are good enough. They start self-doubting themselves and that creates havoc in their mental space. And once the negativity creeps in, it becomes difficult for them to come out of it, and it further affects their performance. In such a situation, it is advised to take a break from cricket, and do nothing, recharge the battery, before training harder to find the form back.
2) Feeling of jadedness
Before the pandemic, cricketers used to play cricket, non-stop, moving on from one tournament to another, without much of a break. In fact, IPL has such a packed schedule that mostly cricketers were either travelling, training or playing games. There was hardly any rest. When there is too much cricket, the feeling of jadedness creeps into the mental space and starts affecting the performance. And it comes to a point when you feel more pain than gain to enter a cricket field.
3) Feeling of loneliness
Cricketers may be surrounded by numerous die-hard fans and millions of followers on social media and mobbed everywhere they go, but the feeling of loneliness may creep into their mental space as they would be away from home, family and friends for months. And if there is any household trouble back home, it further affects the player’s game, and hurt his mental space.
Hence, you see Indian captain Virat Kohli, who is one of the few cricketers to play all formats of the game, keeps taking a regular break to be with his family.
4) The defeatist feeling
Cricketers may not show but a bitter or embarrassing loss may continue to haunt them for the rest of their lives. As cricket is a game of ifs and buts, those small mistakes that tilted the balance in opposition’s favour would continue to rankle them for the rest of the lives. For example, West Indian players, who were part of the 1983 World Cup final, continue to rue the loss to India.
In an event, Sir ViV Richards said that they would any day exchange the 1983 WC trophy for the thrashing they gave to India in the Test series post the tournament. Hence, these losses may affect their mental space throughout their lives.
Considering the mental health issue that can rankle cricketers, a lot of cricketing boards has appointed mental conditional camps or doctors to help players overcome the mental fatigue and focus better on their game.
Cover picture credits: 7News