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Phill Hughes laid to rest

Phill Hughes laid to rest
Cricket world stood united in grief as Australian batsman Phillip Hughes was laid to rest in his hometown here on Wednesday amid an outpouring of emotional tributes by mourners including a distraught national skipper Michael Clarke.

Hughes, who would have turned 26 last Sunday, was fatally hit by a bouncer at the back of his head during a domestic game last week. He battled for life for two days before passing away to leave the sporting world in stunned sadness. In a funeral attended by thousands and televised live, friends, family and teammates paid their tributes to the young batsman. The Indian team, which is here for a Test and limited-overs series, was represented by captain Virat Kohli, batsman Rohit Sharma and Team Director Ravi Shastri during an emotional goodbye to the player.

Clarke, Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland besides members of the Hughes family, read out heart-rending tributes to the youngster before Elton John’s “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” filled the air. “I don’t know about you, but I keep looking for him. I know it is crazy but I expect any minute to take a call from him or to see his face pop around the corner. Is this what we call the spirit? If so, then his spirit is still with me. And I hope it never leaves,” a choked Clarke said.

Hughes’ coffin was led out after the tribute ceremony for a procession around the streets of Macksville to allow the locals to pay their last respects. The procession moved through the streets with players and other mourners walking behind. The Australian players later formed a guard of honour and the hearse and the funeral procession moved past them en route to the burial.
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