Was Phillip Hughes deliberately targeted? Family storm out of court during inquest

Hughes family disagreed with most of the submissions of Cricket Australia's counsel during the five-day inquest.

Phillip Hughes
Hughes played 26 Tests and 25 ODIs for Australia between 2009 and 2014 Reuters

Phillip Hughes' family walked out of court on the final day of the inquest into the cricket's death after the lawyer representing Cricket Australia said the state coroner should not rule based on claims of "sledging".

Hughes collapsed face first during a Sheffield Shield match between South Australia and New South Wales (NSW) after being struck by a bouncer on his neck on 24 November, 2014 at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).

The former Australian opener, who never regained conscious after he received the blow, breathed his last at a Sydney hospital on 27 November, three days shy of his 26th birthday.

In the cricketer's family's submission to the inquest, his father Greg alleged that his son was deliberately targeted with an array of "illegal" short deliveries. He also termed the SCG "an unsafe workplace" during the game, according to the Reuters.

During the five-day inquest, Australian cricket community, including his former teammates and umpires, had given their testimonies. Notably, a submission from Hughes' friend Matthew Day stated that NSW pacer Doug Bollinger had said "I am going to kill you" to the batsman before pacer Sean Abbott's bouncer hit him.

However, Bollinger reportedly told the inquest that he could not recall saying anything like that to Hughes. NSW Wicketkeeper-batsman Brad Haddin, batsman David Warner and Abbott along with umpires, also gave their testimonies.

Hughes' family lawyer Greg Melick initially said that the testimonies were fabricated but later maintained the statements made by players and umpires were not reliable as they had to recollect events that happened 18 to 22 months ago, according to the Yahoo Sports.

The entire family of Hughes left the courtroom on Friday immediately after lawyer Bruce Hodkinson, who was representing the cricket board, said the testimonies of the players and umpires should not be doubted.

Finding from the five-day inquest will be delivered by the state coroner on 4 November.