With the topic of mental health’s importance among people being discussed on all forums, sports is one sector where both athletes and those following the sport on regular basis have come out in open and shared what they feel amid mounting pressures and time away from families.

However, all time legend cricketer and 1983’s World Cup captain Kapil Dev felt it other way round, which cost him thrashing on the social media.

In a recent interaction with media people, Kapil Dev was seen talking about ‘pressure’ and ‘depression’, and referred to them as American words. The video has gone viral.

“I hear a lot of times on TV these days, there’s a lot of pressure, (we)play the IPL, so there’s so much pressure. Then I only say one thing – don’t play. What is pressure? If a player has passion, there will be no pressure. I can’t understand these American woods like pressure, depression. I don’t understand these. I’m a farmer and we played to enjoy, and there can’t be any pressure in enjoyment,” TOI quoted Kapil Dev as saying at the ‘Chat with Champions’ event.

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Citing the example of school students, Kapil went on further.

He said, “I went to a school once and the students said ‘there is a lot of pressure’… (So I said) You people study in air-conditioned schools, your parents pay the fees, teachers cannot beat you up, and you feel pressure? Ask me what pressure was all about during our time. Teachers used to beat us up first and then ask us where we had gone… Students need to convert this into pleasure and fun; pressure is a very wrong word.”

Though, earlier this year, former Indian cricket skipper Virat Kohli – who was struggling with his form, admitted his struggles with mental health. “I personally have experience times when even in a room full of people who support and love me, I felt alone, and I am sure that this is a feeling that a lot of people can relate to,” Kohli had said, adding, “It (mental health) is definitely a serious issue and as much as we try to be strong at all times, it can tear you apart.”

Following the comments by Kapil Dev on ‘pressure’, social media users trolled him and referred his comments as ‘disappointing’.

Here are few comments:

Though the pressure, depression and mental health topics were discussed previously, but during and post COVID-era, the issues have become pertinent and are being discussed widely. More and more people are coming in front and sharing their experiences on how they faced issues with mental health. Even medical experts and psychologists too have shown their concerns.

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