'At times felt I didn't want to play cricket' - Mitchell Starc reveals his struggles in last two years

‘At times felt I didn’t want to play cricket’ – Mitchell Starc reveals his struggles in last two years

Starc picked 19 wickets in five Ashes Test matches at an average of 25.36.

Mitchell Starc
Mitchell Starc. (Photo by AAMIR QURESHI/AFP via Getty Images)

Australian pace bowler Mitchell Starc won the Allan Border medal for the very first time for his performance in the last calendar year. Starc picked 17 wickets in five Test matches at an average of 33.23 in 2021 and was the second leading wicket-taker for Australia.

In the recently completed Ashes series, the left-arm pacer picked 19 wickets in five matches at an average of 25.36. He was the only pacer in both the camps to play all five matches of the series. Starc took 11 wickets in three ODIs last year at an average of 10.63.

He also won the Men’s ODI player of the year award for his performance in the format. After receiving these awards, Starc reflected on his struggle in the last two years and mentioned that there were times when he didn’t want to play cricket at all.

“The last two years, as life is at the moment, there’s a lot of ups and downs. You find ways to adapt and what not, but it’s a reflection of the support base I have had throughout those two years as well. There’s certainly been times when I haven’t played my best cricket or certainly times over those two years where I didn’t want to play any cricket,” Starc said in an interview with Cricket Australia.

Thankful for my support networks: Mitchell Starc

Mitchell Starc also mentioned how his wife Alyssa Healy and other fellow teammates supported him during this difficult phase in his life. He also added that his wife supported him despite being a cricketer and having a busy schedule.

“I’m very thankful for my support networks and in particular (my wife) Alyssa, to play cricket at the highest level (and) be there to support me as well, I can’t thank her enough for that. I’ve got a wife that plays at the highest level and a couple of my closest mates who play International cricket, so I’ve got a pretty good sounding board in that regard. A lot of respective opinions in our change room as well,” he added.

Starc also thanked the Australian cricket team’s physio David Beakley to provide him support which allowed him to play all five Ashes Tests.

“It goes back to the work you do behind the scenes, and the work you put in with S&Cs and time spent with physios and what not,A huge thanks to the support staff, particularly Australian Men’s physio David Beakley to keep me on the park for five Test matches and keep me on the park for five,” the left-arm pacer further said.