TNSJA honours Sharath Kamal with sportsperson of the year award

Chennai: The annual awards and scholarships function organised by The India Cements Ltd and the Tamil Nadu Sports Journalists’ Association (TNSJA) on Saturday brought the past, present and future stars of the TN sporting fraternity under one roof. The event celebrated the achievements of some of Tamilnadu’s finest sportspersons and also encouraged promising talent.

Legendary Indian tennis player Vijay Amritraj, former India leg-spinner V.V. Kumar and Asian Games gold medallist (200m) R. Gnanasekaran were felicitated with the India Cements-TNSJA Lifetime Achievement awards, while table tennis ace Sharath Kamal won the Sportsperson of the Year for 2018-19.

Among the emerging talent, chess prodigy D. Gukesh and athlete PM Tabitha were given the Young Achiever awards. Ten up-and-coming sportspersons were also given scholarships to the tune of Rs 3 lakh.

Vijay Amritraj, who received his award from former hockey Olympic gold medallist V. Baskaran, was at his eloquent best as he reminisced about his illustrious career. He also heaped lavish praise on N Srinivasan, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, India Cements Ltd., for the support he has extended to sports and particularly cricket in his distinguished career as an administrator.

Sharath, who was recognised for his exploits in table tennis, has enjoyed a brilliant run over the past 12 months in particular. He won gold, silver and bronze in the men’s team, doubles and singles categories respectively at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and then went on to win two historic bronze medals in the men’s team and mixed doubles events at the 2018 Asian Games.
Sharath said he has been working hard with the aim of winning an Olympic medal.

Chess prodigy Gukesh announced his arrival as one to watch out for in grand style by becoming the world’s second youngest Grandmaster (GM) at the age of 12 years, 7 months and 17 days.

There was also recognition for RB Ramesh, who won Coach of the Year having trained many of these prodigious talents in the field of chess.

Main Awardees:

India Cements-TNSJA Lifetime Achievement award 2018-19: Vijay Amritraj; V.V. Kumar; R. Gnanasekaran;

Sportsperson of the year: Sharath Kamal

Young Achievers: D  Gukesh & PM Thabitha

Team of the year: Tamilnadu Women’s Football team

Coach of the Year: RB Ramesh

NT Bureau