New Delhi: Aryaman Birla, who was part of Rajasthan Royals till the last IPL season, has said that he is taking an indefinite break from cricket owing "to severe anxiety related to the sport".
The 22-year-old, who plays for Madhya Pradesh in the domestic circuit, took to social media to announce his decision on Friday night.
"It's been a journey of hard work, perseverance, dedication and immense courage to get to this point in my cricket career. However, I've been coping with severe anxiety related to the sport for a while now," Aryaman wrote in his statement.
The opening batsman comes from the illustrious Birla family and his father, Kumar Mangalam Birla, is one of the major business tycoons of the country. He added that he persevered to keep playing till now but the time has come to put his mental health above everything else.
"I've felt trapped. I've pushed myself through all the distress so far, but now I feel the need to put my mental health and wellbeing above all else."
"And so, I've decided to take an undefined sabbatical from cricket. This lovely sport is an integral part of my life and I hope to be back on the field when the time is right."
— Aryaman Birla (@AryamanBirla) December 20, 2019
Aryaman has played age-group cricket for Madhya Pradesh before making it to the senior Ranji side in 2017. He has played nine first-class games and four List A matches.
Last year, he topped the CK Nayudu (Under-23) Trophy run charts with 602 at an average of 75.25, scoring three hundreds in nine innings.
The opening batsman was also a part of the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Rajasthan Royals for two seasons from 2018-2020. However, he didn't get any game time and was released ahead of this year's auction, which took place on Wednesday.
"We all have our own journeys and I want to take this time to understand myself better, open my mind to new and varied perspectives and seek purpose in my findings," he wrote.
Aryaman's sabbatical comes two months after Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell stepped away from cricket citing mental health issues. Since then, many cricketers have opened up about their struggles, taking time away from the game to deal with their issues.
Australia's Nic Maddinson and Will Pucovski had also announced breaks from international cricket to deal with their mental issues and got support from Cricket Australia.
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Siraj to bowl the final over of the day. Mix up between the batters off the second but thankfully, no damage is done, a comfortable double there. The third delivery is a nip backer, Green happy to leave it. A wild bouncer off the last. Australia finish Day 1 at 274/5.
Australia were 166 for two at stumps after more than three hours' play was lost due to persistent drizzle at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
There had been speculation that selectors may stick with makeshift opener Matthew Wade even if Pucovski was fully recovered from the latest in a series of concussions.