Marcus Trescothick says Jonathan Trott's decision to leave the Ashes due to a "stress-related illness" goes some way to explaining the batsman's poor display in the first Test.
Trott, 32, struggled to cope with the pace and bounce of Australia's attack in Brisbane scoring just 19 runs in two innings, falling on both occasions to short deliveries from Mitchell Johnson.
Trescothick, who pulled out of England's 2006-07 Ashes tour with depression, sympathised with Trott and his illness and explained how it would affect his performance.
"I think it probably can (explain it) a little bit," said Trescothick. "He didn't look himself, he didn't cope with the situation, he didn't deal with it.
"I can understand that and I sympathise. When I'm not right and I'm struggling with bits of depression, it's very hard to focus on your technique and watching the ball.
"You can only times that by 10 in the pressure cooker of an international game so it makes a little more sense now when you sit back and watch it.
He added: "You get to these points where you just can't take anymore - you can't get through the day let alone go out there and bat and try to win or save a Test match.
"I've got to sympathise with Trotty, obviously, having been in exactly the same situation in 2006/07 - trying to make that decision and knowing all of the consequences and attention that it is going to bring on you is very, very tough.
"I think we need to allow him a little bit of time; that's the key at this point. I know that there is going to be a media scrum over the next couple of days but we just need to allow him that bit of time to get well again because your health is far more important than any game of cricket that we play.
"I've started tours sometimes feeling not in the right frame of mind but have managed to get through a certain little period to carry on and keep playing well.
"But clearly it has got too much. This is probably the biggest pressure environment that you can face in international cricket - going to Australia with the pressure of the Ashes and being put under scrutiny.
"It's a very hostile environment when the whole of the country is battering you left, right and centre. You want to give everything you can for your country to try and make it work but sometimes these things are just too big."
During the first Test, which England lost by 381 runs, Australian batsman David Warner questioned Trott's technique against fast bowling, claiming the batsman was "weak" and had "scared eyes".
England coach Andy Flower said the comments were disrespectful to Trott but did not have an impact on his decision to go home, but Trescothick said: "They wouldn't have helped, of course not but this isn't something that has just brewed overnight. This has been looming for a while.
"I'm sure the England management have been well aware of it for pretty much the preparation time of the series building up, but it has obviously come to a head now.
"There are always things that add to the problems and make things worse and they would be hoping that he could deal with them and move on.
"Andy Flower said already in the press conference that he has had these problems on and off for a while, as people do. It's not something that just generally crops up overnight - it tends to take a bit of time to manifest.
"This is an illness that one in three people deal with and it doesn't take into regard what job you do or where you live or what sort of house you've got."
Hear more from Marcus on tonight's The Ashes Verdict when he'll be joined in the studio by Jeremy Snape and Bob Willis. Charles Colvile will present the show, on Sky Sports 2 from 10pm.
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