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15 named for prestigious Arjuna Award

Indian women's cricket team captain, Jhulan Goswami, who won the ICC Women's Player of The Year Award in 2007, was on Friday, named for the Arjuna Award for the year 2009 by the committee headed by former track queen PT Usha. Meet the stars

cricket Updated: Jul 31, 2010 00:37 IST
Saurabh Duggal

Indian women's cricket team captain, Jhulan Goswami, who won the ICC Women's Player of The Year Award in 2007, was on Friday, named for the Arjuna Award for the year 2009 by the committee headed by former track queen PT Usha.

The committee named the country's top-15 sportspersons for the prestigious award. Another committee constituted by the Sports Ministry has named five coaches for the Dronacharya Award and three players for the Dhyanchand Award.

Dinesh Kumar, who won gold in the Commonwealth Championships in Delhi, will get the Arjuna in boxing. He also represented the country at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and won bronze in the World Cup the same year.

Footballer Sunil Chhetri, who is currently playing professional league in the US, has been named, along with Deepak Mondal.

Shahbad, country's hockey hub

Drag-flicker Sandeep Singh and Jajseet Kaur again brought the small Haryana town into the spotlight after the two were short-listed for the Arjuna. Last year, women's team captain, Surinder Kaur, became the first player from the city to get the award.

Haryana on top

Of the 15 Arjuna awardees, five — Dinesh (boxing), Krishna Poonia (athletics), Sanjeev Rajput (shooting), Sandeep and Jasjeet (both from hockey) — are from Haryana.

Jagseer Singh, the 24-year-old athlete from Rajasthan, has been named for the Arjuna in the para-sports category. Jasjeer, currently training at NIS Patiala, is considered one of the country's strong medal contenders at the Commonwealth Games. He won bronze in 100m at the 9th Asiad in Kuala Lumpur in 2006 and bagged gold in the World Championships in Taiwan in 2007. He also represented the country in the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games. He also holds the national mark in long jump.

Dronacharya for Bansal

Hockey coach, AK Bansal, who was chosen for the Dronacharya, is the man behind the success of former captain Dilip Tirkey. He has nurtured the sport in the Chota Nagpur belt (comprising villages of Sundergarh district in Orissa, Gumla and Ranchi districts of Jharkhand and Raigarh district of Chhattisgarh).

Bansal was the coach of the young Orissa team, which made it to the semifinals of the senior national championships in 1993 at Bikaner. Fourteen of the 16 boys were offered jobs at the Rail Coach Factory, Kapurthala.