Khel Ratna: Proudest moment for Vinesh Phogat

New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) Wrestler Vinesh Phogat said that it has been a long wait for her to get the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award but now that she has, it is an added responsibility. The 25-year-old is one of five athletes recommended for the nation’s highest sporting honour by the National Awards Committee.
“Proudest moment! Intezaar lamba raha but khusi bhi doguni huyi. Bhagwan ne chaah toh is award ka maan rakhungi. Responsibility badh gayi hai abhi aur zyada (The wait has been long but the happiness also is two-fold. If God is willing I will honour this award. It’s an added responsibility now),” Vinesh told IANS.
Vinesh is the first Indian woman wrestler to win gold in both the Commonwealth Games (Gold Coast 2018) and the Asian Games (Jakarta 2018). In February 2019, she became the first Indian athlete to be nominated for the Laureus World Sports Awards. Later in the year, she sealed qualification to the Tokyo Olympics with a bronze-medal winning performance at the 2019 wrestling World Championships in Kazakhstan.
India’s star batsman Rohit Sharma, 2016 Rio Paralympics gold medallist Mariyappan Thangavelu, table tennis sensation Manika Batra and Indian women’s hockey captain Rani Rampal are the four other athletes to have been recommended for the Khel Ratna this year.

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