Jonathan Trott exclusive: 'I fought as hard as I could to stay on Ashes tour'
England batsman opens up on his emotional troubles, facing Mitchell Johnson and his international future...
Last Updated: 14/03/14 7:31pm
Jonathan Trott says mental and physical burn out, not depression, was to blame for him leaving the Ashes tour, and he wants to play for England again as soon as possible.
Speaking publicly for the first time since he came home from Australia, the 32-year-old batsman told a Sky Sports documentary to be shown on Sunday that he was left with no other option but to leave the tour after scoring 19 runs in the first Test. England went on to lose the Ashes 5-0.
"I wasn't helping anyone by being there," admits Trott. "I would have been a passenger basically. I was trying everything to get myself in the right frame of mind to contribute.
"I was trying everything. I was working hard in the nets. Emotionally it was hard to keep myself in check; just coming down to breakfast I'd sit on my own away from the guys with my cap over my head because I didn't know how I was going to react to having to go to the cricket ground again.
"[On tour] you end up going back to your room and it's difficult. I'm sitting here now and I can feel the emotions again and it's really difficult in that you are seen as one of the senior guys in the team and you feel sort of hopeless."
Trott says he started feeling symptoms of burn out during the home Ashes series last summer and he couldn't see the ball properly. He declined an offer to take a break during the subsequent one-day series and wasn't mentally ready for the tour.
"Obviously people have their own struggles and their own ideas of why I left - you know 'cricket got the better of me', 'it was too tough and he ran away' - but I gave it everything I had basically and I knew I was fighting as hard as I could. But I didn't have the staying power to get everything I wanted to do right."
Trott suffered similar symptoms on his first tour with England in South Africa in 2009/10, but this time it was just too much to deal with.
"In Brisbane I spoke to the doc and on one of the last nights I was there he said, 'if I was in the situation and I was a GP I'd sign you off for three weeks from work and say come back and see me in three weeks'.
"But we're on an Ashes tour and you can't do that, so I didn't have anywhere to go really so I made the decision that it was the best option."
Trott had a difficult time against Mitchell Johnson in the Brisbane Test and the one-dayers in England but denies the Australian paceman, who finished the Ashes series with 37 wickets at 13.97 apiece, was the cause of his problems.
"I'm sure people will think that and people have said it but to me it didn't matter who was bowling and that's the hardest part to accept. It doesn't matter if it was 100mph or 90mph or 60mph it all pretty much felt the same."
The Warwickshire batsman has been receiving treatment from the ECB medical staff and a psychologist outside the game over the last four months. He will play for his county at the start of the season and says he wants to return to the England side straight away.
"I know there's a Scotland [ODI] at the beginning of May - I think that would be a good game to get back into the mix, back into the squad environment and then at the end of the month there's [the first Test against] Sri Lanka.
"I don't want to be one of those cricketers who picks and chooses, I want to be available from the word go. I'll probably be under a cloud for a bit that "he left an Ashes tour is he going to be ok, is he going to be able to come back?" and I certainly feel I can. I just hope I can prove it."
You can watch the full story in the documentary 'Jonathan Trott: Burn Out' at 7pm, Sunday night on Sky Sports 1