Phillip Hughes’ manager says his family are bracing for a tough day.
The young cricketer will be farewelled in his home town of Macksville, on the NSW mid-north coast, on Wednesday at a funeral to be attended by thousands of people, including Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
‘Today is going to be a really tough day for the family, there is no doubt about that,’ James Henderson told the Nine Network.
‘The cricket community … will put their arms around the family and help them through.” Mr Henderson said Hughes was a “no fuss sort of guy”.
However, the level of public warmth toward him said a lot about the person he was.
‘For the family and the extended family and the community here in Macksville and the cricket community who did know him, he was a special, special person,’ Mr Henderson said.
Organisers had kept about 80 per cent of the seats at the funeral open for Macksville residents.
The small town is expected to shut down for the service starting at 2pm at the Macksville Recreation Centre, which is expected to cram in 700 people.
Thousands are expected to pay tribute to the 25-year-old batsman by watching the funeral from overflow areas at a nearby sports field.
Hughes died last week, aged 25, after being hit in the head by a bouncer in a Sheffield Shield match in Sydney.
While the focus will be on Macksville, the funeral will be broadcast to the public at the SCG, Melbourne’s Federation Square, the Gabba and Brisbane’s Southbank, the WACA, the Adelaide Oval and Bellerive Oval and on national television networks.
‘There is not one Australian today who can’t join the family here in Macksville,’ Mr Henderson said.