New Delhi: Deepa Malik, who secured a silver in the shot put F53 category in the 2016 Rio Paralympics, was awarded the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award on National Sports Day. Manuel Fredericks, who has had a big hand in India hockey, was awarded the Dhyan Chand award for his achievements while Arup Basak was also given the Dhyan Chand award for his contributions to the growth of Table Tennis in India. Deepa Malik, who became the first Indian woman to win a medal at the 2016 Paralympics Games, has backed out of the next Games in 2020 in Tokyo due to injury and is instead considering taking up swimming. Malik had secured silver in shot put in 2016 Paralympics, but she revealed that shot put and javelin in her disability category were not a part of the next Paralympics, which will be hosted by Tokyo from August 25.Malik was joint winner of the top honour with Asian and Commonwealth Games champion Bajrang Punia, who is in Russia to prepare for the upcoming World Championships in Kazakhstan. Malik became only the second para-athlete after double Paralympic gold-medallist javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia, who received the recognition in 2017, to have won the prestigious award. At 49, she also became the oldest athlete ever to have claimed the honour. Malik became fourth-time lucky as she was ignored for the award for the past three years, leading her to question and criticise the decision.”I am very happy. This whole journey has been more about changing the attitude of people towards disability and the hidden potential in people with disability. I think the award is going to be a huge inspiration to women athletes in disability. It took 70 years for independent India to win medal in Paralympic,” Malik said.There were several other prominent sports personalities who were awarded the Arjuna Award. World No. 1 wrestler in 65kg, Bajrang Punia was also awarded the Khel Ratna but he could not accept it as he was out of the country. The Arjuna Award was also awarded to people like Ravindra Jadeja and Poonam Yadav, track and field stars Tejinder Pal Singh Toor, Mohammed Anas and Swapna Barman, footballer Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, hockey player Chinglensana Singh Kangujam and shooter Anjum Moudgil.Also Read | NRI businessman announces cash prize for 2016 Rio paralympics heroesAs per guidelines, to be eligible for the award, a sportsperson should not only have had good performance consistently for the previous four years at the international level with excellence for the year for which the Award is recommended, but should also have shown qualities of leadership, sportsmanship and a sense of discipline.Also Read | PM Narendra Modi honours Rio Paralympics Medallist Deepa Malik at Haryana Swarna Jayanti program in GurugramProminent absentees from the event were cricketer Ravindra Jadeja, Asian Games gold-medallist shot-putter Tejinder Pal Singh Toor, and silver-winner quartermiler Mohammed Anas, all of who were picked for the Arjuna award this year. Jadeja is currently on national duty with the Indian Test team in the Caribbean, while Toor and Anas are competing in the national inter-state athletics meet in Lucknow right now.List of Awardees: Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award: Deepa Malik (para-athletics), Bajrang Punia (wrestling) Arjuna Awards: Ravindra Jadeja (cricket), Mohammed Anas Yahiya (athletics), Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (football), Sonia Lather (boxing), Chinglensana Singh Kangujam (hockey), S Bhaskaran (bodybuilding), Ajay Thakur (kabaddi), Anjum Moudgil (shooting), B Sai Praneeth (badminton), Tajinder Pal Singh Toor (athletics), Pramod Bhagat (para sports-badminton), Harmeet Rajul Desai (table tennis), Pooja Dhanda (wrestling), Fouaad Mirza (equestrian), Simran Singh Shergill (polo), Poonam Yadav (cricket), Swapna Burman (athletics), Sundar Singh Gurjar (para sports-athletics) and Gaurav Singh Gill (motorsports). Dronacharya Award (regular category): Mohinder Singh Dhillon (athletics), Sandeep Gupta (table tennis) and Vimal Kumar (badminton). Dronacharya Award (lifetime category): Sanjay Bhardwaj (cricket), Rambir Singh Khokar (kabaddi) and Mezban Patel (hockey). Dhyan Chand Award: Manoj Kumar (wrestling), C Lalremsanga (archery), Arup Basak (table tennis), Nitten Kirrtane (tennis) and Manuel Fredricks (hockey). highlights Deepa Malik became the first Indian to win a medal in Paralympics.Deepa Malik will not be part of the 2020 Olympics.Ravindra Jadeja was nominated for the Arjuna Award. For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.
Former USC receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster slated 96 yards on seven receptions last night against the Buccaneers. (Daily Trojan file photo)The NFL season is underway and Week 3 has concluded with the first- and second-year Trojans making an impact on their respective teams. Along with a talented crop of rookies, former five-star recruits and receivers Adoree’ Jackson and JuJu Smith-Schuster have demonstrated the USC football program can develop talented players and take them to NFL stardom. Sam DarnoldBranded the face of the Jets franchise after a resounding 48-17 win in his debut against the Detroit Lions, rookie quarterback Sam Darnold struggled against the Browns in Week 3. The pressure was on Darnold on Thursday night to show the Browns they should not have passed on him in the draft with the No. 1 pick. After coming out hot to a 14-0 lead fueled by a strong ground game and consistent quarterback play, the Darnold-led offense sputtered. Following an injury to Browns quarterback Tyrod Taylor, rookie Baker Mayfield played his first real snaps. The pressure was even higher as the two highly touted rookies duked it out, but Darnold threw two critical interceptions that overshadowed his solid start to the game. These errors resulted in a 21-17 loss for the Jets.JuJu Smith-SchusterAnother Pro Football Focus hero, second year wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster had a 134.0 passer rating on passes targeting him his rookie year, the highest for any rookie receiver in the last 10 years. It’s hard to say that Smith-Schuster is a breakout candidate because it feels like he has already broken out. In his first two games, he’s backed up his fan-favorite personality and eccentric touchdown celebrations with 240 receiving yards and a touchdown. With Le’Veon Bell out for the foreseeable future due to contractual issues, there will be plenty of opportunities for Smith-Schuster to showcase his talent.Adoree’ JacksonAfter posting an 82.3 Pro Football Focus grade and making it onto Pro Football Focus’ list of “Second Year Players Primed to Breakout in 2018,” second year cornerback, Jackson has not disappointed. While it’s hard to evaluate a cornerback’s performance based on statistics alone, Jackson has recorded plenty to justify the hype. In his second game against the divisional rival Texans, he demonstrated his athleticism while recording his first career interception over superstar receiver DeAndre Hopkins. Jackson has come into his own after a rollercoaster rookie year and is positioned to be a stud for the Titans, who hope to return to the playoffs this year.Ronald Jones IIRookie running back Ronald Jones II was taken in the second round of this year’s NFL Draft. Yet, in spite of the Bucs’ bottom ranking ground game, Jones has not played a snap with Peyton Barber and Jacquizz Rodgers ahead of him on the depth chart. In the NFL season’s third week, Jones hoped to have made more of an impact to balance the Bucs’ passing attack. He struggles to fit into the Bucs’ vertical offense as a player who doesn’t catch the ball much; Jones only had 32 catches his entire college career. As the Bucs’ backup quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick was thrust into the starting job and is averaging over 400 yards passing and four touchdowns over the first two weeks Jones will continue to find where he fits in.Uchenna NwosuAfter striking fear into the hearts of Pac-12 quarterbacks last year, rookie outside linebacker Uchenna Nwosu began what he hopes will be a reign of terror on quarterbacks at the next level when he recorded his first sack in Week 2 against the Bills. Otherwise, Nwosu has been relatively quiet on the stat sheet, but is seeing an uptick in snaps after only seeing two defensive snaps his first game. In spite of major injuries, the Los Angeles Chargers are eyeing a playoff berth, and Nwosu looks to be a key piece in a dominant defense this season.