Depression 'the biggest fight' for Ricky Hatton

Former world champion boxer Ricky Hatton has spoken out with regards to his battles with depression.

The sportsman described the condition as his biggest fight - as he struggles to come to terms with the fact he will never step foot in the ring as a contender again.

He admitted to replacing the buzz he got from the sport by turning to alcohol - and checked into the Priory last year after he was apparently exposed taking cocaine.

The Hitman said he still misses the sport and revealed: "I didn't cope well with not having that feeling any more - of having your hand raised high, hearing the crowds cheer and heading to Vegas."

After losing his last fight to Manny Pacquiao, Hatton admitted to feeling depressed - leading him to drown his sorrows with drink.

Chartered Psychologist Carole Seheult said: "It has long been recognised that retirement from a top level career in any field can be traumatic, particularly if you haven't seen it coming or is a result of your own shortcomings."

"For some people the loss can be devastating and coming to terms with the idea that one is no longer up to the job can be a heart breaking experience. This seems to have been the case with Ricky Hatton, professional boxer and world champion at two weights who has recently retired."

"Losses of celebrity and the acclaim of the public hit Ricky hard, however coming to terms with his inner feelings and inadequacies has been harder and the root cause of the severe depression he has suffered."

"Ricky admits that he has found it very difficult to cope with the loss of his boxing career and all that it has meant to him in terms of self esteem, discipline and self confidence."

"He readily admits that he used drink and drugs to replace the buzz he derived from training and competing at the top level."

"Although for many people retirement may be a much looked for event, for others there is always the danger that this transition may present unexpected difficulties."

"Let's hope Ricky Hatton soon finds that life after retirement can still be fulfilling and that the promise of new and rewarding experiences will help him to win through his battle with the 'Black Dog'."

Earlier in the week, Hollywood actress Catherine Zeta Jones revealed she has sought treatment for bi-polar disorder at a mental health facility.