Image courtesy of: Fox Sports
Having had the pleasure of working alongside Australia batsman Phillip Hughes, legendary leg-spinner Shane Warne had no hesitation in saying that the 25-year-old was “one of the good guys”.
Hughes tragically passed away just two days after he was struck on the side of the head by a bouncer that was bowled by New South Wales pace bowler Sean Abbott.
“It’s obviously just shocking news,” Warne told Sky Sports. “It’s horrific and a sad situation that a great young man like Phillip who had the world at his feet is no longer with us.
“I think the cricket family has been touched by the story. It’s just a tragedy for sport. We all love sport for the entertainment it gives us, no matter what the sport, and to see this tragedy on the field it’s just something that should never happen.
“I worked closely with the Australian team in March and saw how hard he worked. He was very, very humble, loved the game and was very passionate about the game.
“He was trying to become the best player he possibly could and to be taken away from everybody and his family at 25 years of age, it’s just a shock to everybody. He was a really good man, one of the good guys.”
However, Warne also stated that it is important for people to spare a thought for Abbott, who went for counselling on Wednesday following Hughes’ fatal injury.
“It’s going to be very difficult to be honest,” Warne said. “It’s going to take time. I feel for Sean Abbott, who was the bowler, it’s going to be tough for him, tough for the players who were on the field and everyone that knew him.
“He’s been around the Australian team, he’s one of Michael Clarke’s best friends, and I know Michael will be struggling. I don’t know what’s going to happen with the cricket that’s meant to be happening next week. It’s just one of those situations where everyone’s in a bit of shock and it’s just so sad.
“Friends and the cricket community have got to get around Sean. This was one of those freak accidents. Hopefully he can get himself up but I am sure he is going to be very disappointed in the whole situation. It’s not his fault, it’s one of those things that happens on the sporting field that we never ever want to see, whatever the sport.
“I hope he’ll be okay and bounce back and I think everyone just needs some time to get over this because it has rocked everyone.”