The 27th of November proved to be a black day in the history of cricket, as 25 year-old Australian batsman, Phillip Hughes, died after being struck by a fast ball.
Now The Queen has sent a private message of condolence to the late cricketer’s family. She conveyed her sympathies to the Hughes family through a letter on Friday night.
During a match at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Tuesday, Phillp Hughes was struck on the head by a bouncer. He was rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital, where he died two days later, succumbing to injuries sustained by the blow. Such an occurrence in the game is rare, but with the average ball being bowled at 44-55 mph in the professional leagues, it is easy to see how the game can become dangerous.
That very night, Australian cricket players attended a gathering at the (SCG) to honour their fallen teammate, and a minute’s silence was maintained in Hughes’s hometown of Macksville, New South Wales.
Grief at the loss of the young sportsman quickly spread across the globe. Even in England, tributes were paid to Hughes, who played for three county sides in England (Middlesex, Hampshire and Worcestershire) between 2009 and 2012. Flags flew at half-mast at both Lord’s Cricket Ground, the home of cricket, and the Australia House in London.
Elton John, who is a huge fan of the sport, sang ‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’ in memory of Hughes during his concert in Germany. “I want to dedicate this song to the memory of Phillip Hughes and to the Australian team and all the cricketers in Australia who knew him, because he gave me so much pleasure,” he said.”This is for you Phil, wherever you are.”
After the song, the musician told the crowd of his sympathy for Sean Abbott, the bowler who delivered the fatal ball, saying: “It wasn’t his fault. It was a freak accident. To Sean Abbott all I can say is, it’s going to take a long time for you to get over this, but you have a huge future ahead of you so please don’t give up.”
Incidentally, The British Royal Family has also suffered from a loss that resulted from a game of cricket. It is believed that Frederick, Prince of Wales, the oldest son of King George II, was killed after a cricket ball struck him on the chest, puncturing his lung.