Virat Kohli has revealed that he went through a tough time mentally during the 2014 series in England where he averaged just 13.40. (Photo Credit: PTI)
Cricket has been in the news recently regarding mental health issues affecting elite-level athletes. Glenn Maxwell decided to take a break from cricket after suffering from mental health issues followed by Nic Maddinson, who opted to take a break during the Australia A match against Pakistan. In previous instances, England players like Steve Harmison, Marcus Trescothick and Graeme Fowler have dealt with depression. The factor of mental health issues has not been a topic of discussion among India's elite athletes, despite the fact that the country tops the list when it comes to rates of depression.
Speaking about the issue of mental health, Kohli admitted that he could not have told how great he felt mentally following his low point which was the 2014 tour of England in which he averaged just 13.4. "To be honest, I couldn't have said that I am not feeling great mentally and I need to get away from the game. Because you never know how that's taken. I have gone through a phase in my career where I had felt that it was the end of the world. I just didn't know what do and what to say to anyone, How to speak, how to communicate," Kohli said.
The Indian cricket team skipper hailed Maxwell and said he has set the right path when it comes to dealing with mental health issues. The Indian captain feels that these issues need to be discussed for a better understanding of what one is going through at a personal level. Kohli, who has played a lot of cricket against Maxwell at the IPL and international level, said he can understand that things must have reached a tipping point for the Australian.
"You know when you get to the international stage, every player that's in the squad needs that communication - that ability to speak out. I think what Glenn has done is remarkable. Not to say that you give up but just to gain more clarity, you tend to take a bit more space which, in my opinion, is quite acceptable and quite a nice thing to do when you are not able to carry on anymore. I think these things should be respected and not taken in a negative way at all. It's just not having the capacity to deal with things which can happen to any person to any walk of life. I think it should be taken in a very positive way," Kohli said.
The Indian cricket team will take on Bangladesh in the first Test in Indore and it will be part of the ICC World Test Championships. The second Test will be a historic Day-Night Test at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. This will be the first time India and Bangladesh will play with the Pink Ball.