Abbott to sit out grade cricket

As NSW cricket players this weekend set one foot on the road back to normalcy, Sean Abbott is still some way off returning to the field.

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Several NSW players will on Saturday take to the pitch for the first time since Phillip Hughes’ death.

After the Blues squad resumed training on Tuesday, many of the state’s top players including Pat Cummins, Stephen O’Keefe, Moises Henriques, Peter Nevill and Doug Bollinger will turn out for their club sides in Sydney grade cricket.

Cricket NSW said many players had decided to get back on with the game however Abbott would not play for his club side Sydney University.

South Australian batsman Hughes was killed in an on-field accident during a Sheffield Shield game against NSW at the SCG last week.

NSW players who witnessed the tragedy have been deeply affected, particularly Abbott who delivered the ball that felled Hughes.

NSW’s Sheffield Shield match with Queensland at the SCG and South Australia’s clash with Tasmania in Hobart, both due to begin on Tuesday, are in doubt.

Due to the unprecedented situation, players have been given all the time they need.

Cricket Tasmania will on Saturday learn whether their clash with the Redbacks has been cancelled, while NSW players will on Sunday night make the call whether to return against the Bulls.

Individual Blues players may chose to rule themselves out or the side as a whole may withdraw.

Much will depend on how they pull through their outing in suburban cricket.

On Saturday all-rounder O’Keefe will take the field for Manly-Warringah against Western Suburbs at Ashfield in a match which will take on extra significance.

Wests were Hughes’ club side during his stint at NSW from 2007-12.

Henriques, Trent Copeland and Kurtis Patterson will play for St George against Randwick Petersham.

The Fairfield-Liverpool side, which will take on UNSW at Warwick Farm will be boosted by Bollinger and paceman Gurinder Sandhu.

Australian paceman Cummins will play for Penrith, Nevill for Eastern Suburbs and Nic Maddinson for Sutherland.