Cricket Australia’s medical experts acknowledge ‘bubble fatigue’ concerns

England and Australia will both be hoping for less restrictive bio-security protocols during this summer’s Ashes series, Sydney Morning Herald reported.

It is learnt that players and staff have spoken of “bubble fatigue” for much of the past year, with numerous male and female cricketers taking time out of their careers to spend more time at home. England’s players are desperate to avoid harsher quarantine measures before they venture to Australia this summer.

As per the report, Cricket Australia’s medical experts have also acknowledged the cumulative mental health impacts of bio-secure bubbles.

In an article for the British Association of Sport and Exercise Medicine, CA’s mental health lead Matt Burgin and chief medical officer, Dr John Orchard, wrote that the increasing number of players seeking respite from bio-secure bubbles and two-week periods of hard quarantine showed how much their resilience was being tested by COVID-19.

Burgin and Orchard also welcomed instances where players made decisions to step away from the game temporarily in order to prioritise their mental health, describing it as a “cultural shift” for sport in Australia. At the same time, they stressed that a balance needed to be found between bio-security and the avoidance of “excessive” mental health costs to the players.

“In the same newsletter, the Professional Cricketers Association director of development and welfare services, Ian Thomas, articulated the mounting costs of bio-security to the mental health of cricketers,” the article said.