New Delhi: Jhulan Goswami, the India women’s captain, has been awarded the Padma Shri, India's fourth highest civilian honour, for her services to cricket. The award was announced, in keeping with tradition, on the eve of the country's Republic Day.
Jhulan, 28, has taken 135 wickets in 114 one-day internationals and 33 from eight Tests for India. She is the quickest Indian fast bowler and is second in the all-time list of ODI wicket-takers, behind former India spinner Neetu David (141).
Personally, Jhulan had a good last year, during which she took 15 wickets in nine ODIs, at an average of 15.20, including a career-best haul of 6 for 31 against New Zealand in July. In seven Twenty20s for India during the same period, she took nine wickets at 12.88. She did not play a Test match in 2011.
Jhulan joined Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Sunil Gavaskar, Virender Sehwag, Bishan Bedi, Kapil Dev, Sourav Ganguly, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, VVS Laxman and MS Dhoni among cricketers to have been given the award. Diana Eduljee, considered the best Indian women cricketer of all time, had been conferred India's greatest sports honour award, the Arjuna Award, in 1983.
The awards will be presented by the President of India at a function held at Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi in March-April.