'Freak Accident' Claims Life of Star Australian Cricket Player

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Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes died Thursday from a "catastrophic" injury to his head, two days after being struck by a delivery during a match.

Australia captain Michael Clarke, trying to compose himself several times, read a brief statement on behalf of Hughes' parents, brother and sister at a news conference at St. Vincent's Hospital that was broadcast live around Australia.

"We're devastated by the loss of our much-loved son and brother Phillip. Cricket was Phillip's life, and we as a family shared that love of the game with him ... We love you," Clarke read, holding back tears before leaving the room.

Dr. Tony Grabs, a surgeon and director of trauma services at St. Vincent's, where Hughes was taken and was treated by Grabs, said the 25-year-old cricketer had died from a rare injury - there have been only 100 documented cases of vertebral artery dissection - which resulted in severe bleeding on his brain.

Deaths are rare in cricket, although Hughes is the second player in two years to sustain a fatal blow.

Note: This BBC interview can be heard in the Here & Now podcast or with the WBUR app.


This segment aired on November 28, 2014.


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