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Ex-St Helens man calls for more mental health support for players after retirement

Jamie Foster looks to the side while playing for St Helens.

In rugby league and the wider world, we have mental health taken more seriously in the last decade or so.

In rugby league we’ve seen things like rugby league cares, state of mind and even personal ventures like Stevie Ward’s Mentality podcast.

But you can never do enough to support mental health and a former player has called for more support for players transitioning from their rugby league career to the next stafe of their lives.

The player in question is ex-St Helens and Hull FC winger Jamie Foster who took to twitter to suggest that more needs to be in place to support this “massive change” to “the normal world” noting just how “scary” it is.

“Rugby league need to put something in place to help players transition from playing professional sport into the normal world,” Foster said, “It’s such a massive change. All your life is scheduled and set up for you….all of a sudden its gone and you’ve got to do everything yourself.

“It’s so scary when you’ve got to almost restart your life and change how your living…..players mental health takes a massive blow if you haven’t got things in place and money saved or a business etc! Please get something sorted. People taking there own lives all the time.”

These comments came shortly after the sad passing of former Salford and Hull KR man Adam Walker at the age of just 31.

It was reported by Hull Live yesterday that Walker had taken his own life with the news source also reflecting on the difficult things Walker faced throughout his career such as being let go by Wakefield after testing positive for cocaine in 2017.

Walker’s passing again highlights the need to support player’s mental health especially after their professional career has come to an end.

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