Out of form Oz opener Hughes parts ways with Indian-Australian coach

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Sydney, Feb.13 (ANI): Out of form and out of favour Australian opener Phillip Hughes has parted ways with his Indian-Australian batting mentor Neil D'Costa.

"I can confirm that Neil (D'Costa) and I have agreed to go our separate ways. I am currently in the middle of a very critical game for the RTA SpeedBlitz Blues and am totally focused on my role in the team. I will confirm my new management arrangements in due course and take this opportunity to thank Neil for his support," Fox Sports quoted Hughes, as saying.

D'Costa, the man who groomed Michael Clarke, coached the Macksville-born opener for big things.

Hughes has also split with his media manager, Sean Mulcahy.

"Obviously we wish the Phillip the best, I think he's got enormous potential, he just needs to put his head down and worry about his cricket." Mulcahy said.

D'Costa has set up an academy in Nagpur, India, and has not been on hand for his charge for several months.

"It has been great watching Phillip grow as a person and as a player and I am sure he will make every post a winner as he strives toward achieving his goals," D'Costa said in a release.

Hughes went to India after being dropped during the Ashes to work with his coach on a perceived flaw in his technique.

Whatever he did doesn't appear to have improved his batting. Being dropped has introduced doubt to his game.

In the summer of 2008-09 Hughes scored 819 Shield runs at an average of almost 75, including four centuries, and was fast-tracked into Matthew Hayden's opening spot for the South African tour.

This summer he has 453 runs at half of last year's average.

He scored 14 yesterday against Victoria in another disappointing outing and may be on the verge of being dropped by New South Wales.

On current form it is unlikely he will be named in the next one-day match, against South Australia. He may find himself playing more district cricket before the summer is out.

This was unimaginable after he became the youngest Australian ever to score two hundreds in a Test, against South Africa in Durban, not that long back.

Hughes has not been able to score significant runs all summer and struggles for momentum, particularly in 50-over matches. He is a shadow of the gifted young man who seemed to blaze a comet trail wherever he went. (ANI)

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