New Zealand cricketer Jesse Ryder says he is feeling "heaps better", having been taken out of intensive care after he was brutally attacked in the early hours of Thursday.
The 28-year-old was taken to Christchurch Hospital and placed in an induced coma after he suffered multiple injuries, including a fractured skull, when he was attacked outside a bar.
Happily, he was brought out of the coma on Saturday, is now out of intensive care, and has released a first public statement since the incident.
"I just want to let everyone know that I'm okay," said the Wellington batsman. "I feel heaps better today but still really tired.
"I've been reading your messages that have been sent, so thank you to everyone for thinking of me over the last few days.
"I want to thank everyone who has been caring for me at the hospital, they have been awesome. Thank you to my family and friends who have been here also."
Two men who police say are related, one aged 20, the other 37, are due to appear on court on Thursday, charged with assault.
Police think Ryder was involved in an altercation with two people outside Aikmans bar in the Christchurch suburb of Merivale on Thursday morning and was then assaulted by one of them, who followed him towards the car park of a nearby McDonald's.
Ryder has not played for New Zealand since February 2012 and the hard-hitting batsman is something of a controversial figure, his career having been disrupted by several off-field incidents.