Shooters Shreyasi Singh, Rahi Sarnobat and Ankur Mittal were among the twenty sportspersons who were conferred with the Arjuna Award by President Ram Nath Kovind at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Tuesday. The annual National Sports Awards were bestowed on the best athletes that the country has seen in the past one year.
The 26-year-old Shreyasi was the only shotgun shooter to win a gold medal for India at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Shreyasi, whose grandfather and father served in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) as it’s president, had won the silver at 2014 CWG and followed that by winning a team bronze at the 2014 Asian Games.
The 27-year-old Rahi created history by becoming India’s first woman shooter to win an Asiad gold. Rahi achieved the rare feat by winning the gold in women’s 25m pistol at the 2018 Asian Games in Palembang, Indonesia. Rahi, who had become India’s first pistol shooter to win a gold in the ISSF World Cup in 2013, had suffered a serious elbow injury last year which kept her out of competition for a year. Rahi had won a silver and a pairs gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and a gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. She had also won a team bronze at the 2014 Asian Games.
The 26-year-old Ankur recently crowned himself as the World Champion in men’s double trap at the 52nd ISSF World Championship in Changwon, Korea. Ankur won a bronze in 2018 Commonwealth Games, but couldn’t make his mark in the Asian Games. Last year, Ankur won multiple international medals including a gold and silver at the ISSF World Cups held in Acapulco and New Delhi respectively. Ankur had also won the silver in the Shotgun World Championship in Moscow.
The awards ceremony, which is traditionally held on August 29 to commemorate the birth anniversary of hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand, was pushed to September 25 this year due to the Asian Games in Jakarta and Palembang.
Honoured to receive the prestigious Arjuna Award from the Honorable President of India @rashtrapatibhvn at the Rashtrapati Bhavan #ArjunaAward #SportsAwardsIndia #Sportsaward pic.twitter.com/2f21G7AadO
— Rahi Sarnobat OLY (@SarnobatRahi) September 25, 2018