Australia mourns as Phil Hughes is laid to rest

Evan Bartlett@ev_bartlett
Wednesday 03 December 2014 10:40

Phil Hughes, the cricketer who died of severe head injuries after being struck by a ball last week, has been laid to rest at a funeral service in Australia.

Family, friends, cricketers, public figures and thousands of mourners all gathered in the New South Wales town of Macksville to pay their respects.

Michael Clarke, the Australian captain (below), held back tears as he said a few words in front of the mourners, recalling one night this week when he visited the Sydney Cricket Ground - where he and Hughes played so many times together.

I stood at the wicket, I knelt down to touch the grass, and I could sense he was here with me, telling me ‘we’ve got to dig in, to get through to tea’… before passing on a useless fact about cows, and then swaggering back to the end, grinning at the bowler and calling me through for a run in a booming voice.

Also at the service was Sean Abbott (below), the New South Wales player who was unfortunate enough to bowl the ball that injured Hughes.

One of Hughes's family members had said earlier this week that they do not hold him responsible and said they wanted to "give him a big kiss and a hug" in an effort to console him.

More: #putoutyourbats tribute sees Twitter users pay their respects to Phil Hughes

More: Australian captain makes emotional statement on behalf of Hughes family