AUSTRALIAN cricketer Moises Henrique has opened up on his harrowing battle with depression, including contemplating taking his own life during a match.
Having captained his country at youth level, the all-rounder made his ODI debut in 2009 and has appeared a handful of times for the baggy green test side.
However mental health problems have followed Henrique throughout his career and he was diagnosed with clinical depression in 2017.
Sleepless nights and anxiety contributed to his decision to step down as New South Wales captain the following year after a short sabbatical from the game.
Henrique told journalist Neroli Meadows on the Ordineroli Speaking Podcast: “If you looked up the depression symptoms on Google, I was ticking off every single one of them, and quite severely.
“There were probably two to three months where I was in a really bad place, trying to function on one or two hours sleep.
“I lost about ten kilos in maybe four weeks. I went from 98 kilos to 88 kilos in the space of four weeks.
“You don’t wish it on your worst enemy. I was an absolute mess.”
Henrique became the first-ever Portuguese-born cricketer for Australia just over a decade ago and last featured internationally against England shortly before his diagnosis.
While some sporting stars have been able to utilise their profession to conquer personal demons, the 33-year-old has previously spoken of how cricket became the focal point for his anxiety.
And he has now opened up on how a first-class game going the wrong way led to him contemplating suicide.
Henrique continued: “I won the toss at Bankstown Oval in a Shield game against Tasmania, and we elected to bowl on what I thought was going to be a green seamer.
“At the end of the day, they were 2/290. Come day two, they get 450, declare, and we’re 5/90 going into the end of day two. I got out for like 20-odd.
“I remember driving down the M5 back home, doing 110 km/h, and I remember thinking to myself in the car, ‘If I just ran straight into this pole here, what would happen? What would be the consequence of what would happen?’
“I can’t do that. It’s not fair on my brothers, it’s not fair on [my partner] and it’s not fair on all these people who are there for me.
“I can’t leave my team with ten men for the next two days.
“I ended up having to pull over because I was crying so heavily and I was shaking. I had to pull over, just took five minutes.
“That wasn’t even at my worst, that was just a fleeting moment … Even at that stage, I didn’t think I had a really bad problem.”
Henrique and partner Krista used Instagram to welcome their newborn son Archie into the world last year and the cricketer has previously warned of the perils of social media attributing to depression.
The right-arm batsman-bowler wrote in February that people’s representation of themselves online rarely tells the whole story with help from charities such as the Samaritan’s always at hand for those in need.
He posted: “I was going through my Instagram and noticed that it’s a highlight reel of smiles, laughs, good times and happy families.
“Whilst things may appear all smiles and good times it definitely is not like that all the time.
“In the last five weeks I’ve felt like shredding as many tears as our baby Archie. Feeling overwhelmed, anxious and worried.
“Just a reminder of the misleading representation social media can portray of our not so perfect lives.
“Mental health is always a work in progress.”
IF you are having suicidal thoughts, suffering from anxiety or depression or just want to talk, call The Samaritans on 116 123.