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Sports


Sindhu, Saurabh bag top honours at ESPN India Awards

Sindhu, Saurabh bag top honours at ESPN India Awards

New Delhi, Feb 20 (UNI) Ace Indian shuttler PV Sindhu and young shooter Saurabh Chaudhary won the female and male sportsperson of the year in the ESPN India Annual Awards announced here on Thursday.

Sindhu, who became the first Indian player to win the World Badminton Championship title, bagged the award for the third time in a row.

Saurabh won a total of five World Cup gold medals -- two in the men's 10m air pistol and another three in the 10m air pistol mixed team event at the ISSF World Cup 2019. He also won a 10m air pistol bronze medal at the World Cup in Rio.

Sprinter Dutee Chand was named as the first winner of the 'ESPN India Courage Award' for being inspirational both on and off the field. She fought the world athletics governing body - the IAAF's discriminatory hypoandrogenism regulations, and earned her right to race again.

In 2019, she became the first Indian athlete to come out in the open about a same-sex relationship.

Ace chess player Koneru Humpy won the award for the 'Comeback of the Year'. She claimed her first world title in December 2019 by winning the Women's World Rapid Chess Championships in Moscow to cap a remarkable comeback to the sport.

The former junior world champion had taken a two-year maternity sabbatical between 2016 and 2018 to look after her newborn daughter.

Wrestler Deepak Punia's gold in the world junior championship, silver in the world senior championship, and earning a qualification for the Tokyo Olympics helped him win coveted ESPN's 'Emerging Sportsperson of the Year' award.

Pullela Gopichand, chief national badminton coach, claimed the 'Coach of the Year' award, for nurturing two Olympic medalists in Saina Nehwal and Sindhu.

Sindhu's World Championship win, the first by an Indian in badminton, has also been selected as the 'Moment of the Year'.

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