The talented Indian footballer, Oinam Bembem Devi, has added another feather in her hat. The legendary athlete has won the prestigious Arjuna Award for the year. Thus, becoming the second Indian woman footballer to receive the  Award, since Shanti Mullick in 1983.

Devi, the industrious midfielder from Manipur, is the flag bearer of Indian women’s football. She is being recognized for her outstanding achievements for the past two decades.

An ecstatic Devi while receiving the award said that she is optimistic about the future of women in football and hopes that the award will “motivate millions of girls to take up Football.”

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“This is an Award for Indian women’s football. I hope this award will help remove the mental block and inspire all girls in the society to take up the sport,” Oinam Bembem Devi said, India Today reported.

“It gives me immense satisfaction to see my name in the same list as the greatest Indian sports persons across all fields. My sacrifice over the past two decades has not gone waste. I need to thank all teammates, my coaches, AIFF and the entire football fraternity along with my family for their support,” she continued.

Women’s head coach Maymol Rocky was happier than anyone. “No one deserves the Arjuna Award more than Bembem. She has done so much for Indian football both on and off the field. I am very happy for her. Congratulations,” she said.

Also Read: Need Women’s Indian Premier League: Mithali Raj

Devi, who tried her stint at the Maldives League, had debuted in international games in 1995. After her winning streak in the SAF Games where she won a Gold Medal. However, in Shillong in February 2015, she bowed out.

She kept her promise on spreading awareness about women’s football in India, and remained closely associated with All India Football Federation (AIFF). She is an active motivator who as the Brand Ambassador for FIFA Live Your Goals, India is making the country proud.

Devi is a renowned international level player, who has been instrumental in India gaining a position of a regional power among masters. Over the years, her determination and passion have led India to score big in five international tournaments.

Also Read: The Chief of IAF Felicitates Indian Cricketer, Shikha Pandey

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Pic by Scoopwhoop

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