Stokes reveals he was ‘angry at cricket’
England Test captain Ben Stokes told the Telegraph on Monday that he felt deep resentment towards cricket because he had been unable to visit his dying father as much as he wanted.
Stokes decided to prioritise his mental health after suffering from a series of panic attacks following the death of his father due to brain cancer almost two years ago.
"So I had a real thing with cricket at the time I took a break. I was really angry at the sport because it was dictating when I could see my dad," Stokes said.
The all-rounder also stressed the importance of opening up about mental health.
"I find sometimes people are a bit nervous to go into the detail about that kind of stuff with me," he said.
"It's perceived you can't feel a certain way - that's a sign of weakness to show that you are not mentally feeling great. People think they can't ask people who have struggled. No. It's fine. I'll happily tell you as much as I possibly can."
Stokes also said that he had feared he might not play again after taking an extended break from cricket last year to focus on his wellbeing.
Speaking about his state of mind prior to taking the break, Stokes told the BBC, "It wasn't over two weeks or a couple of months. It built up over a long, long time, maybe even like three or four years.
"It was like I had a glass bottle I kept on throwing my emotions into. Eventually, it got too full and just exploded."