Phillip Hughes dead: Michael Clarke leads birthday tributes to tragic cricketer

Fans and teammates have taken to Twitter to remember Hughes after he was killed by a Sean Abbott bouncer in a freak accident last week

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The Independent Online

The cricket world has been sending birthday wishes to Phillip Hughes after the cricketer was killed in a freak accident last week.

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Hughes was batting for Sheffield Shield on Tuesday when a bouncer bowled by New South Wales player Sean Abbott hit him on the back of his head, causing him to lose consciousness and later die in hospital.

The sportsman would have been 26 today and as such, many of his fans and peers are marking his birthday on social media.

Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke led the birthday tributes to his “bro” with an emotional News Corp column.

"I don't think in 12 years of playing cricket at the top level I have ever come across a more loyal or generous-hearted team mate," he wrote. "I don't have a blood brother but I am very proud to have called Phillip my brother. I am a better man for having known him.

"I heard a mate a few days ago refer to Phillip's life through this line from an old military poem and I think it perfectly sume him up: 'One crowded hour of glorious life is worth an age without a name'."

David Warner, Steve Smith, Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon were among others to follow Clarke's lead.

Several numbers have taken on special significance in the wake of Hughes’ death: 63 – his score when he was struck; 64 – his one day international shirt number, now retired by Cricket Australia as a mark of respect and 408 – his Test number.


Cricket Australia have been encouraging cricket clubs and fans to use the numbers 63 and 408 to remember Hughes by, with the retirement score at some junior cricket matches extended to 63 rather than the usual 50. Teams have been observing 63 seconds of silence before playing, and the number 408 has been painted on cricket grounds and players’ shirts.

The #putoutyourbats tribute campaign has also launched with players across the world of sport taking part in memory of Hughes.