Battered New Zealand cricketer Jesse Ryder was showing signs of improvement on Friday and gave family the thumbs-up as police charged two men with assaulting the gifted batsman in a savage beating.
Ryder was attacked by a group of men as he left a bar in the South Island city of Christchurch early Thursday, and was rushed to hospital in a critical condition where he was placed in an induced coma.
His manager Aaron Klee said Ryder was responsive Friday and had given the thumbs-up to medical staff and members of his family who rushed to be at his bedside. Ryder remains in an intensive care unit in a stable condition and requires help with breathing because of an injury to his lung while the extent of his head injury has yet to be determined.
Ryder is on a self-imposed exile from international cricket and has rejected calls to return to the New Zealand team despite an outstanding domestic season. He last played for New Zealand a year ago in a one-day match against South Africa.AFP