Nat Sciver-Brunt twice spontaneously raised her mental health concerns.
“I’m in a good place with my cricket and as a person,” she said.
The all-rounder has been the cornerstone of England’s squad for a decade and has always been his calmest in any crisis.
On and off the court, she rarely reveals anything – her more expressive wife Catherine describes it as yin versus yang.
After leading England at the Commonwealth Games in September last year with captain Heather Knight injured, she decided to Take a break for her mental health.
“It’s something I feel I need since six months to a year ago,” Sciver-Brunt said.
“Everything didn’t build up, but it did give me a bit of a headache.”
The first public sign of her struggles came when a bewildered and unsure Sciver-Brunt accepted after the Trent Rockets’ near-impossible victory over the Southern Warriors in the Top 100 playoff last September. interview.
Eight months later, she spoke publicly about her decision, with a room of five journalists silenced on every word.
“I haven’t seen the interview, and I don’t want to,” Sciver-Brunt said.
“I know what I’m talking about, and I think that’s how I felt. It was probably the first interview of the month that I was able to pass without crying.”
Speaking live on Sky Sports, Sciver-Brunt spoke about the difficulties of life on the treadmill in professional sports.
“Sometimes, when you’re at home for two or three days, thinking about getting dressed, unpacking your bag, and repacking shortly thereafter, to be able to have something to help me switch off, instead of thinking about what’s going to happen, Staying in the moment for a little more … I found it hard,” she said.
Sciver-Brunt declared a rest six days later, ruling her out of the series against India.
The Hundred came at the end of an eight-month period with England unexpectedly missing out on a Commonwealth medal, losing the World Cup final by over 50 points in New Zealand and being beaten in the Ashes by Australia.
“I spoke to a clinical psychologist a couple of times and tried to reflect specifically on how the Commonwealth Games were going and how it affected me, which was probably the main reason I needed to go home,” Sciver-Brunt said.
“I did things that had been on my to-do list for a year. Just being happy at home, doing normal things, mowing the lawn, taking the dog for a walk.”
Sciver-Brunt will play again for the Trent Rockets later this summer, having been a regular for England since 2013.
For a generation, fans, pundits and pundits, and probably players, have thought: “Natt is still there. England will be fine.”
This has its own stress.
“I’ve probably had this expectation of myself for a lot longer than you’re saying,” she said.
“That’s always been the role I wanted to play. I wanted to be there in the difficult moments and impact the game with every touch of the ball or whatever.
“It’s probably also a little bit my own fault. It seems to work most of the time, but not all.”
Sciver-Brunt returned in December to dominate another World Cup by February, though that could not prevent England from yet another disappointing semi-final exit.
She averaged 72 runs per game in South Africa, then led the Mumbai Indians to the Women’s Super League title and won the best player award in the final.
Sciver-Brunt may have been signed for £320,000 – the second-highest fee for an overseas player in the WPL – but she measures just as much off the field as she does on it.
“I just bought a new phone and a watch, not much,” she said of her new income.
“I was really nervous. I also bought an Apple Watch, but that’s from [Mumbai Indians owner] Mrs Ambani. “
With just over a month to go until Sciver-Brunt’s next challenge, it may be the toughest in all of sports.
The Ashes kick off on June 22 against Meglanin’s Australia, who have won the past four World Cups and are unbeaten in four Ashes series matches.
She will also play without his wife Catherine, who has retired from the international team.
Earlier this month, 20-year-old bowler Issy Wong made the bold claim that this summer is a “good time” to play in Australia.
Whether it’s Sciver-Brunt’s brilliant mind or simply the difference in two opposing personalities, the all-rounder has adopted a more cautious tone when discussing England’s chances.
“since  Ashes in my heart I feel closer [to Australia] In terms of skills, more than I ever had,” she said.
“It’s just whether we can do it in moments of pressure.
“It’s the same in the Championship. We’ve done really well, it’s a pressure game [ending in defeat] You learn from it, but you can’t learn because the game is over. “
Whether England can stop Australia remains to be seen.
With Sciver-Brunt in good position on and off the field, they’ll at least have a chance.
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