Society needs to break down mental health stigma: Kountouris

Cricket Australia's sports science chief Alex Kountouris praised the players who opened up about their experiences on mental health issues, and also noted that they were true role models, reports Cricbuzz. 

"We genuinely think they are the real models," Kountouris told cricket.­ "I know we often portray sports people as role models for the way they perform on the field, but these three players - and the players before them, male and female - who have come out and spoken about it, I think we should be holding them up as role models.

"It's what society needs, to talk openly about it and break down some of the stigma associated with it. Hopefully it helps people in the wider community, particularly younger people, who are experiencing troubles to go out and talk about it. With the data that we've got, we're seeing that our players are no less or more vulnerable than anyone else in society. We're not calling it anything other than what it is - a part of life - and we've got to find ways to be preventative and manage it when it happens.It's something we've been conscious of for a long time," he added.

Recently, three Australian cricketers - Glenn Maxwell, Nic Maddinson and Will Pucovski - opened up about mental health issues and took a break from the game to deal with it. 

Australian woman cricketer, Nicole Bolton and all-rounder Moises Henriques, too have opened up about their mental health challenges.

Since the tragic death of Phil Hughes in 2014, CA have formed a partnership with the Melbourne-based mental health research group to get insights on stresses and problems faced by the country's cricketers. In a collaboration with the Australian Cricketers' Association, a detailed survey was conducted by state-contracted players.