Former England wicketkeeper Tim Ambrose has revealed a battle with depression in common with several other cricketers.
The 29-year-old has not played for England since 2009, and admitted he struggled mentally after losing his place in the side, leading him to miss much of the 2010 domestic season.
"I was awake 24 hours a day, with things going around in my head," he told the Daily Telegraph. "I was beyond miserable. It felt like I had this duvet that was soaking wet wrapped around me, and I couldn't get it off."
Ambrose played in the last of his 11 Tests against the West Indies in Bridgetown in February 2009, making an unbeaten 76 in his final innings. However, it was not enough to retain his place, and that was the start of Ambrose's greatest struggles.
"I've had issues from a long time back, but it was an underlying thing that was easy to distract from," he said.
"Since I was 15 years old my goal was to play international cricket. That's all I wanted to do. Whenever anything got tough I could always focus back on to that end goal.
"Once I'd reached that goal and walked away I lost all direction. I thought, 'Why am I going to play cricket every day?"
Ambrose's battle with depression contributed to poor form at the start of the 2010 season and he went away to seek help, missing most of the campaign.
Warwickshire surprised him by offering him a new contract for 2011, and Ambrose has worked his way back, finding himself enjoying the game once more. This season, he has helped Warwickshire to the LV= County Championship title as well as the CB40 Trophy final, although he is likely to miss Saturday's match against Hampshire with a thigh strain.
Now Ambrose is preparing to help the Professional Cricketers' Association launch 'Mind Matters', a program of education and assistance for depression and anxiety, next week, along with fellow sufferers Marcus Trescothick and Michael Yardy.
- Tim Ambrose