Virat Kohli, the Indian skipper, lauded Glenn Maxwell’s brave decision to speak up take time away from the sport because of mental-health-related issues to deal with them. Kohli reckoned that the players at the international level should be able to communicate freely when they’re not in a frame of mind to be able to step away from the game.
During Australia’s home series against Pakistan, Maxwell revealed his sabbatical, soon followed by Nic Maddinson pulling out of an Australia A fixture for the same reason. Both were backed up by their cricket board’s support.
After the lows of the 2014 England Tour, Kohli also disclosed his state of mind where he wasn’t sure what the right path forward was and how to get a decision to take a sabbatical. With only 134 runs to his name and a clear susceptibility to the ball moving away from him, Kohli found himself in a spot of bother in that five-match Test series.
He said, “I’ve gone through a phase in my career where I’ve felt like it was the end of the world. In England 2014, I just didn’t know what to do, what to say to anyone, how to speak, how to communicate. To be honest, I couldn’t have said I am not feeling great mentally and I want to get away from the game because you never know how that’s taken.”
“I think these things should be of great importance because if you think that a player is important enough, for the team and for Indian cricket to go forward, I think they should be looked after,” Kohli said.
For such a big figure-perhaps the biggest at the moment-in Indian cricket throwing its weight behind such delicate issues is a welcome opinion, given the level of competition players have to deal with every age group in Indian cricket daily.
“I am absolutely for it. To be very honest, you have a job to do, we have a job to do. And everyone’s focused on what they need to do so it’s very difficult for anyone to figure out what’s going on in another person’s mind,” Kohli added.