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Wasim Jaffer appointed Kings XI batting coach

He recently became the first to play in 150 Ranji Trophy matches and is not far from becoming the first to score 20,000 runs in the tournament, but you won’t hear Wasim Jaffer’s name only when the Ranji is around. According to his new job profile, which is already on display on the IPL franchise’s website, the domestic stalwart, who played 31 Tests and two ODIs, is now the batting coach of Kings XI Punjab.

Apparently, Jaffer, who still plays for Vidarbha in the Ranji Trophy, signed the deal after being persuaded to do so by the new coach of Kings XI, and his former India captain, Anil Kumble. “I’m thankful to Kumble. He’s the one who approached me. It was an honor to play under him for India. I’ve got so much to learn from him. Though I’m currently coaching in Bangladesh (he’s the batting coach at the Bangladesh Cricket Board academy), this is obviously a good opportunity, and I’m looking forward to this experience,” Jaffer told TOI on Wednesday from Nagpur, where Vidarbha are playing Rajasthan in a second-round match of the Ranji Trophy. Jaffer scored 60 in that game.

The 41-year-old elegant batsman, though, didn’t have a particularly good time in his sole tryst with IPL – playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), who finished last, he scored just 115 runs in six matches at 19.16, at a strike rate of 110.57 in the inaugural edition of the IPL back in 2008.

Quizzed on how he would coach batsmen in a format that wasn’t exactly his favorite as a player, Jaffer said: “Yes, but according to me, batting remains the same, though the game has become a bit fast. I’d be happy to learn from the many great players around me in the IPL. I’d be glad to pass on my ‘little’ knowledge to the youngsters, particularly the Indians,” he said.

The completely revamped support staff of the team includes Sunil Joshi as the bowling coach of the team and South African great Jonty Rhodes as the fielding coach of the team. After trading away Ravichandran Ashwin to the Delhi capitals, the franchise may gun for a new captain in Eoin Morgan, who will be available to be bought in the player auction in Kolkata on Thursday.

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