Former India opener and domestic stalwart Wasim Jaffer has been appointed head coach of the Uttarakhand cricket team for the upcoming domestic season.

Jaffer confirmed his appointment to PTI, stating the contract was for a year.

Jaffer, the highest run-getter in Ranji Trophy, had announced retirement in March this year after playing for over two decades, primarily for domestic giants Mumbai and Vidarbha.

This will be his first stint as a head coach with a team.

“I am becoming the head coach of any team for the first time. It is very challenging and something new for me, straightaway after my playing career and I’m looking forward to it,” Jaffer said.

“This is a new team, they have done well. They played the quarter-finals (of the Ranji Trophy in 2018-19 season) against Vidarbha. But they have gone back to Group D (Plate group), so it is going to be a big challenge. I am happy that I am starting from the bottom and for me, it is going to be a good experience,” he added.

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The 42-year-old said he enjoyed mentoring youngsters during his time in Mumbai and Vidarbha and is looking forward to turning things around for Uttarakhand.

“I have heard that a lot of talented players are coming from there. I am hoping to turn them into good players and (Uttarakhand) as a good team,” he said.

“In my last five-six years, I have mentored youngsters; it is something which I enjoy, to be honest. I take a lot of happiness to help the youngsters and see them grow,” added Jaffer, who has featured in 31 tests and two ODIs for India.

Uttarakhand had reached the quarter-finals in their debut Ranji Trophy season in 2018-19, where they lost to Vidarbha, by an innings and 115 runs. They failed to advance to the quarter-finals in the next season from Group C.