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Macksville, December 3, 2014 (PTI)  Eyes welled up all around and mourners, including Australian skipper Michael Clarke, broke down while reading out heart-rending tributes to the late Phillip Hughes, who was laid to rest in his home town here today.   In a funeral attended by thousands and televised live, friends, family and teammates paid their tributes to the young batsman, who died after being hit on the head by a bouncer during a domestic game last week.      

Australia cricket captain Michael Clarke and the rest of his test teammates were joined by former and current players from around the world, and friends and relatives from Hughes' hometown of 2,500 people on the northern coast of New South Wales state, 575 kilometers (350 miles north of Sydney).Hughes died last Thursday, aged 25, after being hit in the head or neck by a ball during a match at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The Indian team, which is here for a Test and limited-overs series, was represented by captain Virat Kohli, batsman Rohit Sharma and Team Director Ravi Shastri during an emotional goodbye to the player, who would have turned 26 the previous Sunday.    Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also joined the world in bidding farewell to Hughes, sending out a tweet to pay his last respects.      

"Heart-rending funeral in Australia. Phil Hughes, we will miss you. Your game & exuberance won you fans all over! RIP," Modi tweeted.   The procession moved through the streets with players and other mourners walking behind. The Australian players later formed a guard of honour and the hearse and the funeral procession moved past them en route to the burial.  The funeral was broadcast live around Australia on commercial television stations and on video screens at the Adelaide Oval, where the rescheduled first test with India will start next Tuesday, and the SCG, where a row of 63 bats were propped up against pickets, each with an inscription of a special moment of Hughes' career.

The coffin was carried from the prayer hall of the Macksville High School by pallbearers -- Phillip's father Greg and brother Jason, along with Michael Clarke, Mitchell Lonergan, Matthew Day, Aaron Finch and Tom Cooper, who was the departed player's housemate in Adelaide and was batting with him when he was struck by the fatal delivery. The prayer service at the school was led by Father Michael Alcock and mourners were left wiping tears as touching tributes were read out by Hughes' siblings, friends and Clarke.

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