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Luke Pomersbach: Latest casualty in the battle against depression

Luke Pomersbach © Getty Images
Luke Pomersbach announced his retirement from the game due to depression © Getty Images

In yet another case of pressures of playing cricket getting the better of a player, Luke Pomersbach has retired from cricket due to depression. Abhijit Banare lauds the support provided by cricket associations to players these days which has assisted the them in making a comeback after dealing with the illness.

There’s no doubt that cricket involve battles with the mind. What happens when the mind starts getting hurt more often in such battles? The ugly ‘depression’ has frequently struck sportsmen and there are various examples of cricketers who have successfully won the battle. Australian cricketer Luke Pomersbach is the latest in the list to bow out due to depression.

While Pomersbach is not a big name in international cricket, it’s essential to take note that it is not just about the players at the highest level who battle with extreme pressure. There aren’t clear indications about the causes for Pomersbach’s depression, but it was certainly surprising to see the cricketer call it quits. One can just hope that he manages to fight over the menace and feel confident in making a comeback.

 

It’s heartening to see Pomersbach receiving support from his state board Queensland, who pledged assistance in funding his medical expenses. “Luke [Pomersbach's] health is the number one priority in all of this and his doctor has told him that … it is essential Luke takes a complete break away from the day to day pressures and challenges of professional cricket so that he can continue to concentrate on his recovery and rehabilitation from his illness. We appreciate the difficulties and challenges that Luke faces with his illness. The most important thing is that Luke continues to receive the necessary treatment and has the best possible support available to him,” Queensland Cricket CEO Geoff Cockerill was quoted by The Guardian.

More often than not, players in such situations feel isolated. The support of officials in fighting the illness gives immense security and strength to the player in the process of recuperating. Looking at the lifespan of a cricketer, situations like these can take away precious time from the career. And having some sense of security and assurance from the board helps players in recuperating soon.

In recent years, thanks to the open mindedness of certain boards, players have felt much easier to confide into their problems and discuss it openly in overcoming it. Jonathan Trott was the latest international player to deal with it, though a lot of uproar was created. In an era where a team’s support staff includes mental conditioning or psycho-analysis experts, it is essential for players to make full use of it.

(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)

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