November 27, 2014 by Ashwin
I don’t know Phil Hughes personally, neither I was ever a fan but his untimely death has shaken me. It’s still difficult to imagine that Phil Hughes is no more. The moment that dreaded news came in I was visibly upset and did a shed a tear or two. Many of my friends were like, why are you so upset? You didn’t even know him personally and you are being so dramatic. Yes, I didn’t know him personally but I admired him. Not just Phil but this is the bond which I have with almost all of the Cricketers. I still remember his knock when he scored a gritty 75 against Dale Steyn & Morkel and following it with two centuries in the next test.
The moment that bouncer from Sean Abbott hit him it looked it was serious and the way Phil Hughes fell on the ground, face first and the players converged towards him, it felt like it was not just another hit. And it wasn’t, not many bouncers have claimed lives of batsmen in Cricket, there have been many balls which have seriously injured batsmen or ended careers but none of them is bowled with the intention of killing a batsmen and in this case a friend and former team-mate.
Phil Hughes in his career would have played more than a million balls and would have never imagined that someday one ball will end his life. In fact no cricketer can ever imagine that this could happen to him, in fact something like this is not expected on a Cricket pitch. A cricketer is not supposed to die in this way and definitely not a 25 year young batsmen with a bright future ahead.
Sports is considered our escape from life issues and not the cause. It’s something which has given us enormous joy but this moment is a very very sad day for a cricketing world. If a cricket fan like me could feel so much bad after this incident what would be his team be going through, also other players who have seen him grow and become such a good player or the Australian team, apparently which he would have been playing in a week’s time had things been bit normal. Just imagine the plight of Sean Abbott, what that poor guy would be going through. He would be feeling like he killed a friend of his and there is a chance that this young bowler might not play cricket again.
This incident also reminds me how fragile our existence is. When Life throws a bouncer at you, you can’t duck and none of the guards is good enough to prevent you from getting out. Probably it all comes down to luck, a term we often use to console or maybe fool ourselves. Unluckily, it was Phil Hughes but could have anybody. It could have been MS Dhoni or some 11 year old kid playing in a park or even me.
When a batsmen has his bat in his hand he bats with a purpose to score runs but somewhere down the line, maybe this event will change things, maybe batsmen will have a thought in the back of his mind maybe this ball can do me what it did to Phil Hughes or a bowler like Mitchell Johnson will think if a bowl a bouncer it might do some serious damage to a batsmen and no one would want to be a Sean Abbott. Yes, in fact bowlers love to intimidate batsmen but taking a life is something no one would want to even think of.
Now whenever I will see the Aussie team, I will think of a young humble, gritty guy whose fate was not fair to him and his family. He passed away doing what he loved and he remained Not out forever.
So Phil Hughes, see you in cricketing heaven, where matches aren’t fixed.