Indian International Sandesh Jhingan and legendary coach Sukhwinder Singh have been awarded the Arjuna Award and Dhyan Chand Award respectively.
While the Arjuna Award is presented by the government of India to recognise outstanding achievement in sports, the Dhyan Chand Award is awarded for lifetime achievement in sports and games.
Sandesh Jhingan who recently left Kerala Blasters and is yet to decide on his new destination made his debut for the Indian National Team in 2015. The 27-year-old centre back won both the ISL Emerging Player of the Year and the AIFF Emerging Player of the Year in 2014. He helped the Indian team to the Hero Intercontinental Cup in 2018 – the Indian defence kept three clean sheets in four matches in the tournament. Jhingan is the 27th Indian footballer to be conferred with the Arjuna Award.
The legendary Sukhwinder Singh is currently coach of the IWL side Rising Student’s Club. He started his coaching career with JCT FC in the National Football League (Now I-League) and won the inaugural edition of the tournament in 1996-97. Besides that, he has won the Federation Cup, Durand Cup and IFA Shield as a coach.
Singh was coach of the Indian National Team during the 2002 World Cup Qualifiers. They narrowly missed out going through to the next round after finishing with 11 points from six games. Sukhwinder was also coach of Pailan Arrows, the Indian U-23 side and Goa’s Churchill Brothers in his long and storied career. The Dhyan Chand Award conferred to him makes him the third individual to receive the award for football.
The Arjuna and Dhyan Chand awards are given out every year to recognise excellence in sports.