The Board of Control for Cricket in India have recommended four Indian cricketers - Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja and women's team leg-spinner Poonam Yadav - for the prestigious Arjuna award. Earlier, Smriti Mandhana was the only cricketer to win the Arjuna award in 2018.
The Arjuna Awards are bestowed by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports in India to pay tribute towards athletes achieving distinction in sports. BCCI announced four cricketers - Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja and Poonam Yadav for the prestigious award after the COA met in New Delhi on Saturday.
“We will decide on the nominees on the basis of their seniority. There will be both men and women cricketers who will be in the list that Karim presents,” a senior BCCI official said while speaking about the nomination based on seniority, reported IANS.
Bumrah has evolved into the leader of the pace attack across formats in the Indian line-up and has been one of the pillars of strength in recent times. Bumrah’s career scaled newer heights when he made it to the International Cricket Council (ICC) Test team of the year in his maiden season in Test cricket in 2018.
Mohammed Shami’s recent run has been more than impressive and his fitness has been the talking point. Widely-reckoned to be prone to injuries, Shami has bagged 68 Test wickets in 2018 and had a huge contribution behind India's historic Test series win in Australia. Both Shami and Bumrah are named in India’s 15-man World Cup squad and will have a key role to play in the prestigious tournament.
Jadeja, on the other hand, has been one of the best all-rounders in contemporary cricket, especially Test cricket and has also earned a ticket to England. Poonam Yadav has made a name for herself with her wily leg-spin and is among the top 10 bowlers in women's cricket.
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