The list is finally here. The announcement for the inaugural BBC Indian sportswoman of the year has been made and the voting for the same is now open.
The head of BBC Indian languages, Rupa Jha, disclosed that a panel of 40 eminent sports journalists picked up the final five nominees. The selection of the nominees has been made on basic a criterion that includes performance in the year 2019 and their influence on the society.
Here is the list of the contenders who vie for this title:
- Dutee Chand: Dutee Chand, the professional sprinter, is the current national champion in the women’s 100 metres event. She is also just the third Indian woman to qualify for the women’s 100 metres event at the Summer Olympic Games. This 22 year old star athlete from Odisha won the gold medal at the World University Games held last year. She is not just an ace sportsperson but also a champion of societal change.
- Vinesh Phogat: This 25 year old wrestler has her eyes firmly set on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. It is notable that she missed out the 2016 Rio Olympics due to injury. Cousin of well known wrestlers Geeta and Babita Phogat, Vinesh became the first Indian woman wrestler to win gold at both the Asian Games and the Commonwealth. This year in January she won gold in Rome Ranking Series.
- Mary Kom: This year winner of the India’s second highest Civilian award, Padma Bhushan, Mary Kom has also made it to this list of nominees for the BBC Indian sportswoman of the year award. This 36-year old boxer is also a Rajya Sabha member of Parliament. She has been crowned the world champion as many as six times in her illustrious career. She won India a bronze medal at the 2012 London Olympics.
- PV Sindhu: The first Indian to become Badminton World champion, PV Sindhu, has recently been conferred with Padma Bhushan award, which is the third highest Civilian award in the country. She has also won multiple tournaments including the Olympics and on the BWF circuit.
- Manasi Joshi: The Indian Para-badminton athlete, Manasi Joshi, surprised everyone when she won the gold at the Para badminton world championship held at Basel, Switzerland. She also won a bronze medal at the Asian Para games 2018, held at Jakarta, Indonesia.
You can cast your precious vote until 17th February 18.00 GMT. The winner will be announced on 8th March, Sunday on the BBC Sports website.