McCullum: Ryder not ready for Black Caps return

New Zealand

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum says batsman Jesse Ryder is not on the brink of returning to the side, despite some sublime form, as he has not yet proven to the team that he is ‘ready’.

Ryder, one of the more troublesome players due to alcohol and discipline issues, was dropped in January after drinking the night before a Test. This was not his first offense, and he’d only recently returned to action.

He’d played County cricket for Essex this past season to great effect, and recently scored a blistering 136 off just 57 balls for Otago against Ireland. Pressure to recall him is high, given the Kiwis lost the ODI series to South Africa.

McCullum said: “I’ve already said we won’t compromise the environment because we represent our country and there’s certain obligations which you need to uphold out of respect to the people who support this team.

“Jesse knows he’s got some work to do, he’s an undoubted talent and if he can get himself right and he’s scoring runs and a vacancy is there and the group’s ready for him, I see no reason why he can’t come back.

“But until that happens we’d be trying to push something that is not quite ready.

“We’ve got to make sure Jesse is really desperate to play for New Zealand and make sure he fits within the group.

“He is well aware of that. Let’s hope he is desperate to come back and the environment is ready for him.”

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