Virat Kohli, Mirabai Chanu Nominated For Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award

| September 17 , 2018 , 18:34 IST

Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and world champion weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu were jointly has been nominated for the prestigious and country's highest sporting honour Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, on Monday.

It is learnt that, If Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore accepts the committee's recommendation, Virat Kohli will become the third cricketer to get the award after Sachin Tendulkar (1997) and MS Dhoni (2007).

There are speculations that Indian ace shuttler Kidambi Srikanth who was earlier in contention for his good show in the Super Series Circuit last year lost out to the 24-year-old Chanu, who is the reigning world champion in the 48kg category with a world record to boot.

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Chanu impressed one and all with a tremendous performance at the World Championships last year where she won the gold medal in the 48kg category. She also bagged the yellow metal in this year’s Commonwealth Games held in Gold Coast but didn’t compete at the Asian Games due to injury.

If Chanu does go on to win the prize then she will follow the footsteps of Karnam Malleswari (1995-Weightlifting) and Nameirakpam Kunjarani (Weightlifting-1996) who had previously won this award.

The BCCI has been nominating Kohli for the Khel Ratna for the past three years but in 2016, it was given to Sakshi Malik, PV Sindhu and Deepa Karmakar for their good show at the Rio Olympic Games.

Last year, the Khel Ratna was awarded to former India hockey captain Sardar Singh and para-athlete Devendra Jhajharia.