County news April 22, 2014

Essex bring in Ryder

ESPNcricinfo staff

Essex have signed the New Zealand batsman Jesse Ryder as their overseas player for the 2014 season. Ryder, who recently returned to international cricket after suffering a fractured skull last year, will be available to play in all formats, subject to visa approval, from early May.

Ryder's big hitting could see him make a significant impact, particularly in the NatWest Blast T20 competition, while his colourful history also makes him a draw. Ryder is currently not being considered for selection by New Zealand after staying out late at a bar before the Wellington Test against India in February and he has been suspended on previous occasions for drink-related misdemeanours.

Essex's coach, Paul Grayson, said last week that the club were weighing up their options for an overseas signing. They will not see much of England captain Alastair Cook after the first month of the season and could also lose Ravi Bopara for significant periods. Ryder will provide a proven international replacement at the top of the order and follows fellow New Zealanders Hamish Rutherford, James Franklin, Scott Styris and Tim Southee in heading to Chelmsford over recent years.

"I'm thrilled to have been given the opportunity to represent Essex," Ryder said. "This couldn't have come at a better time as I want to get as much cricket as possible over the New Zealand winter. It's an added bonus that there are a few of the guys who I have played with before, the side looks very strong and they have got off to a good start for the season."

Ryder's availability stems in part from missing out on an IPL contract during the auction in February. This will be his first spell in county cricket and gives him another chance to remind the New Zealand selectors of his positive qualities.

Having suffered life-threatening injuries on a night out in Christchurch in March 2013, Ryder recovered to take a full part in the 2013-14 Plunket Shield with a new team, Otago, for whom he scored 776 runs, with four centuries. His form for Otago led to a New Zealand recall, almost two years after being dropped for disciplinary reasons, and he was part of the team for limited-overs series against West Indies and India before another late night cost him a Test recall and removed him from contention for the World T20.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Reg on April 29, 2014, 11:29 GMT

    While there have been some (i believe exaggerated) issues concerning his off field behaviour I'm not sure why anyone would want to disparage Ryder's basic cricketing talent. He averages 41 in tests and 50 batting at number 5. If that is really mediocre can we please find a few more mediocre players!

  • David on April 28, 2014, 20:21 GMT

    @ru4real - I remember that day well, but what has he done since or other than that test? Yes he bowled very well and won us the match on the final day but what has he done since? He has had issues with team management and in my opinion we have much better bowlers that deserve a go and not just on ability but also on commitment and discipline - Henry, Bennett, Milne - good honest bowlers that deserve to be in the national team a lot more than Bracewell.

    If Bracewell makes his way back into the team and does well I'll be more than happy to admit I was wrong but I really doubt that will happen any time soon, if ever. I can only picture him being half decent in English conditions.

    I think we owe Hesson / McCullum credit. There have been some hickups but the team do appear to be heading in the right direction. Though would be good to see Guptill amongst the runs again - I personally think he is a little mentally weak.

    I'd like to see Martin Crowe mentor more players than just Taylor.

  • Chris on April 27, 2014, 9:19 GMT

    He's an overrated player with an average record.

  • Garry on April 27, 2014, 7:35 GMT

    Matthew Tetley I would like to see Ish Sodhi play a couple of seasons of FC cricket in India, where better to learn the trade as a spin bowler.

  • Jon on April 25, 2014, 10:46 GMT

    Ryder won't appear for NZL again and will likely play out his days as a T20 sellsword. It's a crying shame. Would love to see a test middle order of Williamson, Taylor, Ryder and McCullum. Seriously, how great would that be?

    Good luck JR.

    Bracewell is still part of the mix with NZC. He can bowl all day, swings the ball, but his is workhorse role is currently being filled by Wagner. Plus he's competing with Southee, Boult, Anderson, Milne, Bennett, Neesham, Henry, McClenaghan etc.

  • Dummy4 on April 25, 2014, 7:59 GMT

    doug bracewell is not consistent enough for international cricket yes he has good days but they too few, id like to see ish sodhi given a season with a county or even scotland in the 40 over competition, surely cant be a bad move

  • joe on April 24, 2014, 9:11 GMT

    Sorry ru4real but have to agree with gagg on that 1, bracewell apart from Hobart and 1 test against Zimbabwe has done absolutely nothing guptill under any coach unfortunately has not made the most of his opportunities he is a good player but international red ball cricket he is left wondering hopefully he comes right because I would have him over Fulton any day. As for Ryder well how many chances does he need once again he is a good player but regardless of the coach he still acts the same. So as for your hesson/mccullum conspiracy all 3 of these players have had their fair share of opportunities under different coaches so one would suggest it is up to the players to get it right whether its off field or on field problems that r the matter. Cheers

  • Garry on April 24, 2014, 7:01 GMT

    ru4real and that is all he has ever done, a one hit wonder as they would say in the music industry, unless it is a green strip he is cannon fodder.

  • henry on April 23, 2014, 16:11 GMT

    @DJRNZ ..Bracewell are you forgetting he won us a test match against Aussie but yes that was under Wright and Taylor...oh and Ryder was also part of that team along with Guptill...just thinking about there a worrying pattern emerging here under Hesson/McCullum with the above guys non selections?

    Anyway, I would certainly like to see Bracewell amongst the mix come summer time...he has talent...just needs a proper coach and manager to once again bring out those talents.

  • mustaq on April 23, 2014, 11:55 GMT

    good wishes for jc ryder

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