Sydney - An inquest into the death of Australian cricketer
Phillip Hughes opened on Monday with his family and sport chiefs hopeful some good
can come out of the tragedy.
Hughes, who played 26 Tests, died from bleeding on the brain
in November 2014 after being hit on the base of the skull by a rising ball
while batting in a domestic match in Sydney.
His death - a freak accident - stunned Australia and the
world cricket community, sparking an outpouring of grief.
A spokesperson for the Hughes family, his former manager James
Henderson, said in a brief statement it would be a "very, very, very
"They haven't been looking forward to this week, as you
would imagine," he said.
"They're hoping that perhaps there will be a positive
come-out of Phillip's death as we go through this next five days inside the
New South Wales state coroner Michael Barnes will examine
the manner and cause of his death and also has jurisdiction to make
recommendations, particularly in the interest of public health and safety.
He is expected to look at how the fatal injury occurred and
whether or not a protective helmet would have minimised the risk.
It will also examine emergency planning and response times,
a spokesperson for the NSW Coroner's Court said. The findings may come on Friday,
but could take weeks.
An independent review into Hughes' death, ordered by Cricket
Australia, has already been carried out and recommended earlier this year that
helmets be compulsory for batsmen and fielders near the wicket.
It also suggested substitutes be considered for concussed
players, while ruling the medical treatment he received was appropriate and
At the time, Hughes was wearing a helmet that was not
compliant with more recent, and stringent, British standards, which extend the
grille protecting the face further to the rear of the helmet.
Lawyer David Curtain, who conducted the review, said even if
Hughes had been wearing the newer model, it would not have saved him.Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said the
inquest would be an "emotionally challenging time" for everyone
involved, including Australian cricketers called as witnesses.
"This week is going to provide, I guess, a confronting
reminder of the sad reality that Phillip Hughes is no longer with us," he
said outside the court.
"We do hope that something good comes from this