Commonwealth Games 2022 table tennis champion Sharath Kamal has been nominated for this year’s prestigious Khel Ratna award.
Sharath Kamal will be the second table tennis player after Manika Batra to get Khel Ratna. The 40-year-old Indian table tennis star won three gold medals and one silver at the Commonwealth Games 2022 in Birmingham earlier this year.
Notably, Sharath Kamal is the only sportsperson nominated for Khel Ratna by India’s national sports awards selection committee this year. The committee recommended five names in 2020 and 11 last year.
Tokyo 2020 javelin throw champion Neeraj Chopra, badminton icon PV Sindhu and other top athletes like Bajrang Punia and Ravi Kumar Dahiya couldn’t be recommended for Khel Ratna as they have already won the award in the past.
Rechristened from Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna to Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award last year, the Khel Ratna is India’s highest sporting honour given annually by India’s Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports.
Nominated sportspersons receive their awards from the President of India at the Presidential Palace typically on India’s National Sports Day – August 29.
Apart from nominating Sharath Kamal’s name for the Khel Ratna, the national sports awards selection committee recommended 25 sportspersons for Arjuna Awards.
Badminton player Lakshya Sen, world champion boxer Nikhat Zareen, boxer Amit Panghal and triple jumper Eldhose Paul, all gold medallists at CWG 2022, were recommended for the Arjuna award.
India cricket team captain Rohit Sharma’s coach Dinesh Lad has been nominated for Dronacharya Award in the lifetime category.
Wrestler Bajrang Punia’s coach Sujit Mann, boxing coach Mohammad Ali Qamar, archery coach Jiwanjot Singh Teja and rifle coach Suma Shirur (para shooting) have been nominated for the Dronacharya Award in the regular category.
List of Indian athletes recommended for Arjuna Award for 2022
Seema Punia (athletics), Eldhose Paul (athletics), Avinash Sable (athletics), Lakshya Sen (badminton), HS Prannoy (badminton), Amit Panghal (boxing), Nikhat Zareen (boxing), Bhakti Kulkarni (chess), R Praggnanandha (chess), Deep Grace Ekka (hockey), Shushila Devi (judo), Sakshi Kumari (kabaddi), Nayan Moni Saikia (lawn bowls), Sagar Ovhalkar (mallakhamb), Elavenil Valarivan (shooting), Om Prakash Mitharval (shooting), Sreeja Akula (table tennis), Vikas Thakur (weightlifting), Anshu Malik (wrestling), Sarita Mor (wrestling), Parveen (wushu), Manashi Joshi (para badminton), Tarun Dhillon (para badminton), Swapnil Patil (para swimming), Jerlin Anika J (deaf badminton)
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