#cricket #mentalhealth #addiction #professionalsport #recovery
My name is Luke Sutton. I was a professional cricketer for roughly seventeen years and I had the pleasure of playing with some of the best players in the world. My life would look fulfilled and complete to fans and strangers alike. However, there is so much more to my story that I’d like to share with you.
I had a strange introduction to cricket. The P.E. teacher was looking for volunteers to be the wicket keeper and back then, I didn’t even know what a wicket keeper was. At the time, I was on a swimming scholarship at Millfield school but I decided to put my name forward and I guess that was that. Little did I know I had just chosen a path that would lead to a professional career spanning two decades.
From the outset, I had a natural coordination which was perfect for the role. The wicket keeper was like the drummer of the band and I loved the tradition and camaraderie that the game brought.
I was offered my first professional contract at Somerset at eighteen years old and, like most, that’s when I first started drinking alcohol. Even at a young age I started to realise that I seemed to have a different relationship with it than other people. I seemed to lack any sort of control with it, I quickly developed a persona of ‘work hard play hard’. I was extremely intense with everything around my cricket and just as intense with alcohol and partying. I was burning the candle hard at both ends.