"Craig has been one of our stand-out performers. He's a great outlet for us - he shows huge endeavour and a fantastic ability to drive with the ball and take the fight to the other end of the field when you are under pressure.
"That quality is invaluable, certainly away from home where you are more likely to be under sustained pressure. There has to be an outlet there to relieve the pressure so you can change the momentum of the game. Craig has done that in a number of games this year."
Many predicted Bellamy would likely be ushered aside this summer when further reinforcements were added in the attacking department, but Bellamy has shown himself to be a key figure in the line-up so far during 2009/10.
It is also fair to say there wasn't a whole lot of love for Bellamy when he was signed in the January transfer window, yet he has far exceeded expectations and shown the qualities that Hughes espoused and you can see from his performances exactly why he is such a favourite of his.