Hughes happy with dream start
Phil Hughes admits he is living the dream after his man-of-the-match performance in the second Test helped Australia seal Test series success over South Africa.
Hughes became the youngest Test player to score a century in each innings of a Test in Durban, cementing his reputation as the next big thing in world cricket.
But for Hughes it is about reflecting on a dream fortnight where he has been able to play with his heroes and help Australia defend its number one Test ranking.
"It's definitely been an exciting one or two weeks, one I'll never forget," he said.
“To get in the side and to go how I have, to win 2-0 up in the series, it's a great feeling to be around these guys.
"To spend time in the middle with Ricky, with Katto (Simon Katich), and the guys at the top of the order. It's something I've really enjoyed and it's just been a great week."
Australian captain Ricky Ponting has been delighted with Hughes' introduction to Test cricket.
Ponting admitted he knew very little about the 20-year-old when he began this tour, but now thinks Australia has unearthed a future star of the game.
"I didn't really know him at all before Potchefstroom," Ponting admitted.
“I hadn't played a game against him. I'd seen a bit of him on the television, heard a lot of good things coming from his New South Wales team-mates.
"What I've seen over the past two weeks has been extremely satisfying. I've had a good chance to bat with him a couple of times, it's been a lot of fun.
“To see these young guys come in and have that immediate success is excellent."
What has impressed Ponting most has been Hughes' composure.
Thrust in to the middle of a battle for supremacy in world cricket, the prodigiously talented opener has shown he has the mental strength to match his skills with the bat.
"They (the South African bowling attack) came out all guns blazing in the second innings in Jo'burg and I was batting with him then and I made sure I was around him and the bowlers when a few of the verbals were taking place to see how he handled it," Ponting said.
"He'd just look at me with a smile on his face and tell me that he's loving it.
“That's what cricket is all about, those one-on-one contests you get into. That's what keeps me playing now, I love the contest.
“Phil has showed he really enjoys that. If he continues to do that in the same way he has over the past couple of weeks, I'm sure he'll have a great career."
Hughes is trying very hard to keep his feet on the ground after his dream couple of weeks.
He knows that with an average of 87.5 in two Tests that there will be plenty of hype, but he just wants to go about building his career.
"Obviously, you hear that sort of thing but I like to take it day-by-day and just keep it simple,” he said.
“Go into the next game and not look too far ahead really. Enjoy the game that you are playing. I've played two Test matches now and thoroughly enjoyed them and looking for the third.”