Melbourne [Australia], Nov 14 : Batsman Will Pucovski on Thursday asked the Australian cricket management not to consider him for the upcoming first Test against Pakistan due to mental health reasons.
Pucovski had reported the issue to the team management in Perth, after extensive consultation, it was agreed he could finish Australia A’s three-day tour game against Pakistan.
“We applaud Will for having the courage to discuss his situation with team management in Perth. Will’s decision not to nominate for Test selection was the right one in the circumstances and one that everyone in the Australian cricket family supports,” Ben Oliver, Cricket Australia’s EGM of National Teams said in an official statement.
“Mental health is a complex issue that unfortunately impacts many young men and women in our society. By Will bravely taking this position, he will undoubtedly inspire others facing similar challenges to speak up and take positive steps towards improving their mental wellbeing,” he added.
Pucovski has now become the third Australian cricketer to opt-out of the game citing mental health reasons.
Earlier, Glenn Maxwell had decided to take a break from all forms of cricket to look after his mental health.
Opening batsman Nic Maddinson had also decided to skip Australia A fixture against Pakistan, citing the same reason.
“There is much society still needs to learn in relation to mental health, but we know enough to say with great certainty that silence is not the answer. Cricket Australia has committed to being open about the challenges faced in managing mental health. We are putting player wellbeing first and supporting them unconditionally. That’s something we’re proud of,” Alex Kountouris, Cricket Australia’s Sports Science and Sports Medicine Manager said.
“Will has demonstrated great strength in being open about his situation. While no one wants to see a fine young man like Will confronting mental wellbeing issues, we are heartened by the fact he is surrounded by excellent people who will support him. We are all right behind him,” he added.
Australia and Pakistan will play against each other in a two-match Test series, slated to begin from November 21.