“Took Help For Mental Health”: Ravichandran Ashwin Opens Up On Phase Where He Was In “Dark Space”

India all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin has opened up on his mental health struggles and how he found himself in a “dark space in life”. Ashwin on Thursday was named in India’s squad for a two-match Test series against South Africa, starting December 26, but did not find a place in the ODI and T20I teams. The 37-year-old was part of India’s World Cup squad recently, but played just one game during the tournament as the Rohit Sharma-led side lost in the final to Australia.

Ashwin revealed he was in a “dark space” a few years back, and even took help for mental health to cope with it.

“I am not being diplomatic, but for four to five years (since 2019), I found myself in a very dark space in life, and took help for mental health as well. In the dark space, I realised I have to be ready for any eventuality,” Ashwin was quoted as saying by news agency PTI to former India batter S Badrinath on his YouTube channel ‘Cric It with Badri‘.

Amid uncertainity over his future, Ashwin suggested the day he loses motivation, he would call it quits.

“I have been preparing for life after cricket for five years. But I continue to work hard on my cricket; to contribute with the bat, I went to the USA and practised baseball. The day I lose this motivation, I feel irritated about waking up in the morning to bowl or bat, I know it is over. I will then quit immediately, say thanks to all and go on to the next chapter in life,” he added.

India are currently squaring off against Australia in a five-match T20I series. The hosts lead the series 2-1 with the fourth T20I scheduled to be played later on Friday.

India will tour the Rainbow Nation later this month for three T20Is and as many ODIs, followed by two Tests.

India’s squad for 3 T20Is: Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Tilak Varma, Suryakumar Yadav (C), Rinku Singh, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (wk), Jitesh Sharma (wk), Ravindra Jadeja (VC), Washington Sundar, Ravi Bishnoi, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Deepak Chahar

India’s squad for 3 ODIs: Ruturaj Gaikwad, Sai Sudharsan, Tilak Varma, Rajat Patidar, Rinku Singh, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (C)(wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mukesh Kumar, Avesh Khan, Arshdeep Singh, Deepak Chahar.

India’s squad for 2 Tests: Rohit Sharma (C), Shubman Gill, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Ishan Kishan (wk), KL Rahul (wk), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Mohd. Siraj, Mukesh Kumar, Mohd. Shami*, Jasprit Bumrah (VC), Prasidh Krishna.

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