Ankita-Sharan will be nominated for the Arjuna Award
New Delhi: The All India Tennis Federation (AITA) will nominate Asian Games medalists Ankita Raina and Divij Sharan for the Arjuna Award while former Davis Cup coach Nandan Bal will be nominated for the Dhyan Chand Award. Ankita (27) won a bronze medal in the women’s category at the 2018 Asian Games. He also excelled in the Fed Cup and was instrumental in helping India qualify for the World Group play-offs for the first time.
Delhi’s Sharan won the men’s doubles gold medal in Jakarta with compatriot Rohan Bopanna. He became India’s top doubles player in October 2019 but was later replaced by Bopanna. Bopanna was the last tennis player to win the Arjuna Award in 2018. The AITA, however, is still considering whether to send the child’s name for the Dronacharya Award or the Dhyan Chand Award.
Bal (60) played in the David Cup from 1980 to 1983 and coached India’s Davis Snake for many years. So far, only three tennis players have been awarded the Dhyan Chand Award, including Zeeshan Ali (2014), MP Mishra (2015) and Nitin Kirtan (2019). No tennis coach has received the Dronacharya award.