'I am happy to have Vinay Kumar back in Challengers fold'

Royal Challangers Bangalore coach Ray Jennings said he was happy to have R Vinay Kumar back in the fold after the paceman was picked up by the Vijay Mallya-owned franchise in the last auction here early this February.

Ray Jennings

The 28-year-old, an integral part of Challengers for the first three years of the Indian Premier League, had been bought by the now-defunct Kochi Tuskers Kerala during the fifth player auction here.

“Vinay is a fantastic human being and I was really sad that we missed him last year,” Jennings said while adding that the bowler was shedding his ‘quiet-guy’ image.

“He is one of my favourite guys. He was initially quiet and now he is slowly opening up. He is coming out of his shell. During my first talk with him, I told him ‘you will play for India.’

“I think Vijay (Mallya) made the right call at the auction. Vinay has done well for India and he is probably one of the bowlers, who has grown in the Indian side. He is a good fielder and can bat too.”

Jennings was, perhaps, the first person to stick his neck out and state that Virat Kohli was the future captain of India and the South African was obviously thrilled with the way Delhi youngster’s career has shaped up so far.

“Virat has grown at the rate that I expected him to progress. He is a fantastic human being with a good cricketing brain and I had once said that he is the best 21-year-old cricketer in the world and he will captain India one day.

“He will be among the top three or four batsmen in world cricket one day and I am extremely fortunate to have him in the side.

“We all know how volatile and aggressive he is on the field. He is one of the most aggressive cricketers in India. He never gives up, he gives 100 per cent all the time and I enjoy having him in the side,” he remarked.

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