THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Triple jumper M. Renjith has been selected for the 2008 G. V. Raja award, the most prestigious sports award in Kerala.
Renjith, 22, had represented the country in the last year’s Beijing Olympic Games after having eclipsed Mohinder Singh Gill’s long-standing National record for the event a year earlier at the Asian Grand Prix meet in Guwahati.
The first Indian jumper to cross the magical distance of 17m, Renjith had touched a wind-assisted 17.19m at the Asian championships in Jordan last year. His National record for the event is 17.04m. Coached by Udaya Kumar at the SAI Hostel in Kollam, Renjith finished fourth in the 2006 Asian Games in Doha.
Incidentally, Renjith is the third athlete from Udaya Kumar’s stable to win the prestigious award, the earlier ones being long jumpers K.J. Clinton and Jetty C. Joseph.
The award instituted by the Kerala State Sports Council carries a purse of Rs. 1 lakh, a plaque and a certificate. It will be awarded to Renjith at a public function to be held here next month.
Renjith was chosen for the award by a six-member panel including KSSC president T.P. Dasan, vice-president K. Thankappan, secretary K.A. Antony and members — A.N. Ravindradas, V. Rajagopal and G. Bipin.