All smiles again: Trescothick in action for Somerset, for whom he has been in excellent form © Getty Images
Marcus Trescothick has spoken of his "pain" and frustration in watching his team-mates beat West Indies this summer, but remains satisfied of his decision to delay his comeback from the stress-related illness which forced him home from England's tours of India and Australia last year. Encouragingly though, he is equally confident that his international career isn't yet over.
"Of course I'd love to be playing for England again and watching them this summer has sometimes been painful for me," he told the Mail on Sunday. "I've seen every Test on TV and it's been 'God, I miss this, I miss this a lot'. When the first Test started at Lord's I was very twitchy. It was so tough because I felt so desperate to get back into it.
"If you had asked me the day before that match: 'Could you play here?' I'd have said yes. But just because I wanted to do it, didn't make it the right thing to do. It's hard. I'm not stupid. I'm 31, coming up to 32 on Christmas Day and I've got to be realistic. Thirty two is no age to finish an international career.
"Of course I want to get back in the side as soon as possible, because of the timescale. But I mustn't start to worry about it. I understand the big dilemma: can the selectors take the risk of picking me to go abroad on tour? Can they invest in me after what has happened?
In his absence, Alastair Cook has stroked his way into the sort of form that even Trescothick, in his most ebullient days, would be envious of. In 18 Tests, he has hit six hundreds, over 1400 runs and averages 46.29, at the tender age of 22. Clearly he is the future, and Trescothick is aware that his England record, though impressive, amounts to little when challenging for a place.


Trescothick faces the media, days before he flew home from England's Ashes tour © Getty Images
"Clearly, if I want to continue my career I have to undertake another tour," he said. "But for now, if and when I get back to full fitness and I think I am OK and ready to play, I'll make myself available for England. If they don't pick me, that is just tough."
Encouragingly, his form for Somerset this season has been impressive - especially for someone who, a few months ago, was found slumped in tears on the dressing room floor at Sydney.
"I believe the turning point for me was when I finally came clean about my problems. It wasn't easy, but being open and honest with the public was the best thing I could have done and it began the process of me being open and honest with myself," he said.
"I have learned techniques to help me cope with what has happened and to make sure that if the problems come back I know exactly how to deal with them. There are certain things, certain procedures, I'll probably have to do for the rest of my life.
"It is not a question of saying 'I'm cured' but at least I'm forewarned now. And maybe, after going to hell and back, I can help someone else avoid the journey."