Phillip Hughes
Phillip Hughes died after being struck by a bouncer while on Sheffield Shield duty for South Australia AFP

Cricket Australia has announced that it will sanction an independent review into the death of Phillip Hughes, the talented batsman who lost his life in November 2014 after being hit on the top of the neck by a ball.

The freak incident occurred during a Sheffield Shield encounter between South Australia and New South Wales at the Sydney Cricket Ground and Hughes died at St Vincent's hospital two days later having never regained consciousness.

As well as being met with an outpouring of grief from across the sporting world and beyond, such a tragic event also provoked concerns over the issue of player safety with the 25-year-old, who featured in 26 tests and 25 one-day internationals for his country, having been wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.

This is not an exercise designed to apportion blame on any individual for what took place
- James Sutherland, Cricket Australia

"When this tragedy happened, I said that it was a freak accident, but it was one freak accident too many," Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said in a press release. "Never again do we want to see something like that happen on a cricket field.

"We have a deep responsibility and obligation to look into the events of that awful day to understand everything that occurred and then see what could be done to prevent a similar accident happening in the future."

Sutherland made it clear that the review, set to be overseen by QC David Curtain, will not seek to place blame for what happened to Hughes.

He added: "This is not an exercise designed to apportion blame on any individual for what took place. It is about making sure that as a sport we are doing everything in our power to prevent an accident of this nature happening again.

"There were certain measures put in place soon after Phillip's passing such as increasing the medical presence at all CA matches and working very closely with our helmet supplier to investigate the suitability of protective head equipment offered to all players. This review will help determine whether we need to implement further measures before the 2015-16 season.

"David Curtain QC is one of Australia's leading law practitioners and is highly qualified to lead the review which is being undertaken with the support of the Hughes family.

"We fully recognise that undertaking a process such as this may be a traumatic experience for some and we will be as respectful and understanding as possible throughout that time. As such Cricket Australia and all states continue to make available counselling and support to any players and staff who feel they need help at any time."

As well as looking into the causes of Hughes' death, Cricket Australia has confirmed that the inquiry will also examine a host of other issues including policies in place to prevent any further incidents, the governing body's approach to enforcing the use of protective equipment, the use and standards of helmets, medical screening and injury management of cricketers who may have suffered head or heart injuries.

The results are expected to be made public before the end of the calendar year.