For a sportswoman who holds National Record of having most medals in National Championships, it came as a surprise when she wasn't recommended for the Arjuna Award this year. Disappointment would rather be an understatement for Prasanthi Singh, the shooting guard for the National Women’s Basketball team.
Citing the poor state of Basketball in India, she said, “Sports is not about marketing, it is more about achievements and I think I deserved it” to Times Now. She added that she was certain about getting one this year after being denied for three years for her exemplary performance and consistency in Basketball.
Coming from Varanasi’s Basketball Family of India she lead the Indian team and won silver medal as captain in 3rd Asian Indoor Games held in Vietnam. She also represented India in the 16th Asian Games Guangzhou 2010 and won a gold medal in Asian Beach Games in Sri Lanka in 2011. She has made us proud not one but 21 times by winning National Championships, National Games and Federation Cup.
It is sad that her contribution for Indian Basketball is not acknowledged yet. Is she wrong to expect an Arjuna award, rewarded to a sportsperson for their exceptional contribution in the field of sports? Absolutely not. But it is sad that In India sports is equivalent to Cricket. Basketball hasn't been that popular much to the dismay of the players.
“I don't know what more should I do to get that recognition. To get acclaimed Internationally is huge and its not easy,” she said to Times Now. She added that not only she but her family too expected her to receive Arjuna Award this year. However, Not getting acknowledged for her contribution has left Prashanti disheartened.
Basketball is played by more than 150 countries in the world. Last year, when Geethu Anna Jose was recognised for her work, it brought hopes among the Indian Basketball players who craved recognition for their contribution. However, the panel has yet again disappointed not only the players but the country as well.
“It is disappointment for the sport of Basketball In India” she said while expressing her concern over the state of the sport in the country.
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