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‘Constantly in my mind’: Michael Clarke reflects on Phillip Hughes

Michael Clarke and wife Kyly at Phillip Hughes’ funeral. Michael Clarke at Phillip Hughes’ funeral.
Nanjing Night Net

Best mates: former Australian captain Michael Clarke and Phillip Hughes out in the middle together in 2013.

Former Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke has revealed he did not have time to properly grieve for his mate Phillip Hughes and continues to think of him constantly two years after his death.

Writing in his new autobiography, Clarke admits he was under pressure to keep playing and did not pause to process Hughes’ sudden death and its impact on him.

“Nothing has been quite right since Hughesy,” he wrote in his book, My Story.

“I can see that now. I’ve gone through good moments at times, even such career highs as winning the World Cup and winning a Test match at Lord’s. But throughout it all, there was something not quite right with me, and I couldn’t put my finger on it. Maybe it was too obvious. Or too frightening to face. I never grieved.

“One minute I was at war with Cricket Australia, with the selectors and the high-performance manager, and the next minute the world came to an end. But then Hughesy’s funeral was behind us, CA was anxious to get the Test series with India going, and the world started spinning again.”

Clarke thought of Hughes as a younger brother and was a pallbearer at his funeral in December 2014.

Details about Hughes’ death were heard in a coronial inquiry in Sydney last week with findings to be handed down on November 4.

Clarke recalled the Australian team was under pressure to play the Adelaide Test match just days after saying goodbye to Hughes.

“Unanimously, we want to play the Adelaide Test match as a tribute to Hughesy and for his family, but the timing has to be right,” he wrote. “Eventually an agreement is struck to begin the match on 9 December, six days after the funeral. In retrospect, most of us would agree that it is still too soon.”

The former captain revealed he launched himself into training for the 2015 World Cup without stopping to grieve.

“Throughout all that, I never give myself time to grieve for my mate,” he wrote. “I’m thinking about Hughesy 24/7, but my mind hasn’t been able to stop and take it all in. I’m still half-expecting a text from him. His number is in my phone. He’s still there, in a corner of my mind.”

Clarke famously went on to steer Australia to a World Cup victory but recalled that throughout that time, “I have Hughesy constantly in my mind.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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