National Sports Awards: Know the winners

Every year, the country recognizes and rewards excellence in sports through the National Sports Awards. Here we look at this year's Khel Ratna awardees and Arjuna awardees, and why they won.

Virat Kohli was third time lucky after missing out despite nominations in 2016 and 2017. He is the World No. 1 batsman in both ODIs and Tests and has 6147 runs in 71 Tests with 23 centuries and 9779 runs in 211 ODIs, including 35 tons.
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Mirabai Chanu, who received the Padma Shri earlier this year, was chosen for the Khel Ratna following her gold medal in 48kg category at the World Weightlifting Championships last year and a gold medal at this year's Commonwealth Games. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Neeraj Chopra is Indian athletics' hottest property at the moment. He had a glorious year, winning gold at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games. With a throw of 88.06m, the 20-year-old beat his own national record at the Asian Games.
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Hima Das became the first Indian athlete to win a gold medal in a track event (400m) at the IAAF World U20 Championships. She also won the 400m silver at the Asian Games and holds the national record in 400 metres with a timing of 50.79s. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Before this award, Indian cricketer Smriti Mandhana was named Best Women's International Cricketer of the year by the BCCI. The 22-year-old had an succesful year since the World Cup in 2017, scoring 669 runs in 12 matches with seven fifties and one century. She dominated the Kia Super League in England, where she scored 421 in 10 matches runs at a strike-rate of 174.68 for Western Storm, and ended up as the tournament's highest scorer. Photo: PTI
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Jinson Johnson won a 1500m gold and 800m silver at the Asian Games, concluding what was a brilliant year for him, where he set new 800m and 1500m national records too. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Rohan Bopanna won the first Grand Slam of his career in 2017, making him the fourth Indian player to win a Grand Slam. He won the mixed doubles title at the French Open with Gabriela Dabrowski. He also won the Monte Carlo Masters - his fourth Masters title. Bopanna finished as runner-up with Timea Babos in the Australian Open 2018.
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Para-athlete Ankur Dhama won two gold medals (800m and 1500m) at the 2017 Para Nationals, one silver (800m) and two bronze medals (1500m and 5000m) at the 2014 Para Asian Games in Incheon (Korea) and has also represented India in blind football. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Indian double trap shooter Ankur Mittal recently won the gold medal at the IAAF World Championship. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Para-badminton player Manoj Sarkar has been performing consistently and is currently ranked No. 1 in the world. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Table tennis player Manika Batra won four medals at the Commonwealth Games and two medals at the Asian Games this year. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Badminton player N. Sikki Reddy won gold in the mixed doubles event with her partner Pranaav Jerry Chopra and bronze in women's doubles at the Commonwealth Games 2018. She also won a mixed doubles gold at the Syed Modi International Championships. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Hockey midfielder Manpreet Singh led the Indian team to a bronze medal at the World League Final in 2017 and has been part of the team that won a silver medal at the FIH Champions Trophy in London and in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. He was part of the 2014 Asian Games gold medal-winning team. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Savita helped India win the Asia Cup last year. It helped India qualify for the World Cup after a gap of 13 years. She was also part of the team that won the Asian Champions Trophy in 2016. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Sathiyan Gnanasekaran represents India's rise in table tennis in the last year. The world no. 40 had a remarkable 2017, becoming the first Indian to win two IITF Pro Tour titles when he won the Spanish Open. He won silver in men's doubles with Sharath Kamal and bronze in mixed doubles with Manika Batra at the Commonwealth Games. He was part of the Indian team that won bronze at the Asian Games this year. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Boxer Satish Kumar won silver at the Commonwealth Games 2018 in the super heavyweight category. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Shubhankar Sharma is the highest-ranked Indian golfer in the world and has won two European Tour titles. He is currently leading the Asian Tour Order of Merit list. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Pooja Kadian became the first Indian to win gold at the World Wushu Championships in 2017. She finished on top in the 75 kg women’s sanda category. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Sumit Malik won the gold medal in wrestling (125kg) at the Commonwealth Games 2018. He won silver at both the Asian Champinships and Commonwealth Championships in 2017. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Rahi Sarnobat became the first Indian female shooter to win a gold medal (25m pistol) at the Asian Games in 2018. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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Colonel Ravi Rathore has played for India at five successive World Polo Championships. He is the eighth polo player to recieve the award. Photo: PTI
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Double Trap shooter Shreyasi Singh won the gold medal at Commonwealth Games 2018 and a bronze in the double trap team event at Asian Games this year. Photo: Sandeep Saxena
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