New Delhi: Seven top sportspersons, including cricketer Rahul Dravid, would be considered this year for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, country’s highest sports award.
According to sources, the other names to be considered are — Somdev Dev Varman (tennis), Jwala Gutta (badminton), Ronjan Sodhi and Sanjeev Rajput (shooting), Vikas Krishan (boxing) and Sandeep Singh (hockey).
Except Dravid, all other sportspersons figure in the Indian contingent for the London Olympics.
Sources said that the sports ministry has received a letter from the Board of Control for Cricket India recommending the names of Dravid and Yuvraj Singh for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna and the Arjuna awards, respectively.
Though, initially, the last date for sending recommendation was April 30, it was later extended to July 19.
Constituted in 1992, a total of 24 top sportspersons have so far received the Khel Ratna. While one top athlete receives the award every year, an exception was made in 2009 when three famous stars — boxers Mary Kom and Vijender Singh and wrestler Sushil Kumar — were jointly named for the prestigious award.
Sources also said there were around 80 applications for the Arjuna award.