Mithali Raj and Ravi Ashwin have been nominated for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award 2021 by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). KL Rahul, Jasprit Bumrah, and Shikhar Dhawan have also been nominated for the Arjuna Award. While Mithali and Ashwin are unquestionably legends of the game, the trio of Dhawan, Rahul, and Bumrah has cemented their place in the team.
Mithali is the all-time leading run-scorer in women's cricket and has played the game for 22 years. She has also served as the team's captain for about 17 years and is unquestionably the most important player in the batting order.
The 38-year-old is expected to retire from cricket after the ICC Women's 50-over World Cup in 2022, and the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award suggestion will be a fitting homage to Mithali.
On the other hand, Ashwin has a habit of shattering records and making history by becoming the second-fastest player to get 400 wickets. Not only with the ball, but also with the bat, Ashwin has helped India win on multiple occasions. With 71 wickets, the off-spinner was the leading wicket-taker in the World Test Championship.
“After a lengthy discussion, it was agreed to submit Ashwin's name, as well as the names of women's Test and ODI captain Mithali, for the Khel Ratna. We are nominating Dhawan for the Arjuna again, and we will also propose the names of Rahul and Bumrah,” a source confirmed.