Ace drag-flicker Sandeep Singh, India’s woman cricket captain Jhulan Goswami and boxer Dinesh Kumar are among the top sportspersons who are tipped to receive the Arjuna awards in recognition of their outstanding achievements during the last one year.
National sports awards (Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Arjuna and Dhyan Chand) selection committee headed by P T Usha finalised the list of awardees.
The selection committee will now submit the names to the government, which will formally announce the list in the next few days. Generally, the names submitted by the committee is approved but the Sports Ministry can make changes.
Drag-flicker Sandeep was in a red-hot form in India’s recent hockey tour of Europe, while seasoned pace-woman Jhulan is currently heading the bowling list of International Cricket Council’s ODI women’s rankings.
Pugilist Dinesh, who entered the quarterfinal of the World Championships in Moscow last year, won the light heavyweight 81kg Commonwealth Championships title earlier this year.
Woman hockey player Jasjeet Kaur is also in the Arjuna awards list.
According to sources, national record holder in 400m hurdles Joseph Abraham and discus thrower Krishna Punia, who is also a Commonwealth Games medal prospect, were in the 15-strong list.
The second youngest Grandmaster in the world, Parimarjan Negi and Olympian wrestler Rajiv Tomar figured in the list for the award, which carries cash prize, a bronze statuette of Arjuna and a scroll.
Swimmer Rehan Poncha, who would be India’s bet for a medal in Delhi Games was also nominated for the honour.
Footballers Sunil Chhetri, who is currently waiting for his Major League Soccer debut for the Kansas City Wizard in the United States, and Deepak Mondal were the two footballers in the list.
In shooting, Sanjeev Rajput would receive the award. Other sportspersons who are tipped to get the award are spiker Kapil Dev, kabbadi player Dinesh Kumar and para-Olympian Jagseer Singh.
President Pratibha Patil will give away the awards at a function in Rashtrapathi Bhawan on August 29.
Keywords: Arjuna awards