31 Mar 2013

Ryder improving and thanks public for support

6:53 pm on 31 March 2013

Cricketer Jesse Ryder has thanked the public for their support and says he's improving and has been moved out of intensive care.

The international cricketer was attacked outside a bar in the suburb of Merivale early on Thursday and he suffered a fractured skull and collapsed lung.

In a statement on Sunday, Jesse Ryder says he feels better but is still tired.

The 28-year-old came out of a drug induced coma on Saturday and was shifted from intensive care into a general ward at Christchurch Hospital on Sunday afternoon.

Ryder says he has been reading the messages of support people have been sending him and thanks them and the staff who have been caring for him.

He also thanks his friends and family who have been with him at the hospital.

It's still not known how long Ryder will have to remain in hospital.

Ryder had been socialising with his Wellington Firebirds' team-mates and was attacked twice after leaving the bar. Police have charged two men, aged 20 and 37, with assault.

Ryder's manager Aaron Klee says while he is out of the coma, the future is uncertain for the former Black Cap and it is not known if he'll return to cricket.

"I hope so - who knows? If he can recover from these injuries and get back to playing sport, I'm pretty sure that there's a drive within Jesse that will get him back if he can."

The 28-year-old was due to fly to India to take up a $NZ308,000 contract with Indian Premier League side the Delhi Daredevils on Saturday.

Mr Klee says he has spoken to the Daredevils about the contract, but the focus at present is on Ryder's recovery.

He says Ryder does not have any memory of the attack, but recalled getting a duck against Canterbury on Wednesday.

Heath Mills, chief executive of the Cricket Players Association, says he is relieved Ryder has come through but, though his condition is improving, there is still a long recovery ahead.

Mr Mills says the association will be discussing how to make sure something like the attack on Ryder does not happen again.

However, he says it has to be careful not to over-react, because barring players from leaving their hotel rooms is not going to help.