Wellington - Troubled New Zealand batsman Jesse Ryder's international career is in doubt after cricket organisers said he would not receive a central contract for the coming season.
New Zealand Cricket (NZC) said no contract for the 2012-13 season was offered to Ryder, who has been involved in a string of alcohol-fuelled incidents, after discussion with his management and the players' association.
Ryder announced he was taking a break from cricket in March, when he was dropped from the Black Caps after becoming involved in a row in a Napier pub, with his manager saying he needed time to sort out personal issues.
The 27-year-old was not selected for New Zealand's tour of the West Indies in March but did travel to India to play with the Pune Warriors in the IPL.
NZC chief executive David White said Ryder wanted to work on personal goals without the pressure that accompanied being a contracted player.
"All of the evidence shows that Jesse is on the right track, both on and off the field, but we’re aware that there are still steps to be made," he said in a statement late Wednesday.
"While cricket remains an important part of his life, it is his health and well-being that need to be the primary focus."
An NZC spokesman said Ryder was still available for selection even without a central contract.
Black Caps vice-captain Brendon McCullum said he believed the big-hitting batsman would eventually return to international cricket as a better player.
"He's got a tremendous amount of talent and everyone wants him back on the park," he told RadioSport.
"He's just got a couple of blemishes he's got to iron out. I'm sure if he can do that then New Zealand Cricket and Jesse are both going to benefit from it."