Australia

Phillip Hughes: Review into cricketer's death released

A memorial to Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A review into the death of Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes said he had received appropriate treatment after he was struck in the neck with a ball

Protective helmets should be compulsory for batsman facing fast and medium-paced bowling, a review into the death of cricketer Phillip Hughes says.

But the report found helmets meeting the newest safety standards would not have saved his life.

Hughes, 25, was stuck by a bouncer during a domestic match at the Sydney Cricket Ground in November 2014.

The review, commissioned by Cricket Australia, also highlights a need for 'concussion substitutes'.

Hughes was struck on the neck and died in hospital two days later.

The governing body of the sport in Australia asked barrister David Curtain to lead the review into the incident.

He recommends that batsmen, wicketkeepers and close fielders in first-class cricket should wear protective helmets that meet stringent British safety standards in matches and in training.

But he said such helmets would not have saved Hughes' life.

"I do not believe the new helmet would have afforded additional protection against the blow given the location of where Phillip was struck, as the protection to the neck, at the rear, is no different," he said.

He also called for more evaluation into the effectiveness of clip-on neck guards in preventing a similar incident.

The review also looked into the medical care given to Hughes before an ambulance arrived some 20 minutes after the incident. It concluded "the attention received by Phillip after being struck had no role whatsoever on his subsequent demise, due to the nature and severity of his injury".

Curtain said it was beyond his remit to call for substitutes to be allowed to bat and bowl when a player has to leave the field due to concussion - under current rules, replacements are not allowed to do this.

But he added it was a "concern" that some players might not want to leave the field and leave their team short and said it was an area for Cricket Australia to explore.

Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said a number of recommendations in the review had already been implemented.

He added the body was already "exploring the possibility of allowing a 'concussion substitute' during domestic matches" and that the International Cricket Council would look at the issue at its next meeting on 31 May.

A coronial inquest in Hughes's death will take place in October.

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