Phillip Hughes inquest: Bowler Sean Abbott 'confused and upset' after death

Phillip Hughes
The inquest has heard Hughes' death was "inevitable" from the moment he was struck by a cricket ball

Sean Abbott felt "confused and upset" after he bowled the ball that fatally injured Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes, an inquest has been told.

Hughes died aged 25 from a haemorrhage in the brain, two days after being hit on the neck during a domestic match in Sydney on 25 November, 2014.

The five-day hearing is examining if his death was avoidable.

In a statement, Abbott said "it was all a bit of a blur" and that he felt "in a bit of a daze" after the incident.

The inquest, held at New South Wales Coroner's Court, will address the speed of the emergency response and the nature of play on the day.

Abbott, now aged 24, said he had run to Hughes and held his head as he lay on the pitch at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).

"Once in the changing room, I felt confused and upset," Abbott said. "I had a headache, people kept coming up to me but I cannot remember what they said. I felt super tired. These feelings stayed with me for the next few days."

The inquest has looked into whether Hughes, batting for South Australia in a Sheffield Shield game against New South Wales, had been targeted with short balls, or had received unsettling comments from opponents.

Cricket bats and caps belonging to the players are placed near the scoreboard which displays a tribute to Phillip Hughes
Cricket bats and caps belonging to the players were placed near the scoreboard which displayed a tribute to Phillip Hughes

Brad Haddin, Doug Bollinger and David Warner, who were playing for New South Wales, have denied there was any element of unsportsmanlike behaviour in the match.

Those sentiments were echoed by Tom Cooper, who was batting alongside Hughes at the time of the incident.

Questions had been raised whether one bowler told Hughes: "I'm going to kill you." But Abbott said he did not remember such sledging.

"I felt the game that day was being played within the laws and spirit of cricket," he said. "I don't remember the ball being fast or slow. Maybe the wicket was a little bit slower that day. That's the type of wicket at the SCG.

"I know there has been a suggestion that the laws of the game be changed so that bouncers should not be bowled, but the same cricket ball will be hit and flying around whether bouncers are bowled or not."

On Monday, the inquest had heard the batsman's death was "inevitable" from the moment he was struck by a cricket ball.

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