Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Bell end

Setting aside my unfailingly puerile sense of humour (and with immediate apologies for the headline), I was surprised to learn that Bath and England prop Duncan Bell, who has just announced his retirement, has been suffering from depression for the past 10 years.

My first reaction was "he's a prop - they're never happy" and I admit it’s difficult for me and, I imagine, most people to comprehend how such a larger-than-life character as Bell, all 19½ stone of him, could suffer with such an affliction. As we’ve previously seen with cricketers such as Marcus Trescothick and Steve Harmison, however, depression is no respecter of reputation.

It is to Bell’s great credit that he is now courageously confronting his illness head on, having previously thought that admitting to depression would be a “a sign of weakness” and an “admission of failure”. Time, then, to ditch the good old British stiff upper lip - coming forward to discuss his personal demons can only help to raise awareness of the issue and, hopefully, help others who may be suffering in silence.

Good luck to Bell in his retirement and his continuing battle.


ladycranesevens said...

Totally off the topic but have you seen the new strip for England 7s?

Phil Bailey said...

Well do Duncan for bringing it to the attention of the masses.

In such a macho sport it must be hard to do it publicly as he has. i respect him very much for doing so. The same with Hareth Thomas and his battle against homophobia in sport.

Have you heard about Michael Lynagh? Apparantly he has had a stroke. I've have written about it in a post on my dumptackle blog.

Phil Bailey said...

Yes the new sevens kit if purely vomit unducing. Equal in its monstrosity with the 'Tequila sunrise' jersey.

You can see it on my dumptackle blog.


Toby said...

The white home kit and purple away kit - which England will also wear at in Glasgow on May 5-6 - features yellow stripes down the arms and chest, fitting for the tournament's 1970s disco theme.