Rohit Sharma holds the record for most centuries (5) in a single edition of the World Cup.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli receives the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award in Sports and Games is the highest sports honor in India. This award is given annually by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The recipients are awarded for their “spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field of sports over a period of four years” at the international level.

Instituted in 1991-92, the award was given based on performance in a year by the sportsperson. Later in February 2015, the criteria was revised to performance over four years. The first recipient of the award was Chess Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand, who was honoured for performance in the year 1991-92. In this article, we will be listing the cricket players who have received this award.

1997-98: Sachin Tendulkar

Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar was the first cricketer to receive the prestigious Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award for his performance in 1997-98. By the end of the year 1997, the Master Blaster had played 231 matches for India in International cricket. In these games, he scored 9940 runs at an average of 43.21. This included 26 centuries and 54 fifties.

Earlier in the 1996 Cricket World Cup, Tendulkar was the highest run-getter. He scored 523 runs in seven innings at an average of 87.16 and a strike rate of 85.87. He slammed 2 hundreds and three half-centuries in the tournament. Sachin went to become the first cricketer to win the Bharat Ratna Award.

2007-08: MS Dhoni

MS Dhoni, one of the greatest captains India ever produced received the Khel Ratna award in 2007-08. He was the winning captain of the Indian team in the 2007 T20 World Cup. The Indian side became victorious in the inaugural edition with a thrilling win against Pakistan in the final.

Overall, Dhoni played 538 matches across formats and scored 17266 runs at an average of 44.96. He led the Indian team in 332 games and won 178 of them. He is the only captain to win all three ICC trophies which include ODI World Cup, T20 World Cup, and Champions Trophy.

2018: Virat Kohli

Indian captain Virat Kohli received the Khel Ratna Award in the year 2018. He is considered among the best-ever cricketers to play the game, and arguably the greatest ever ODI player. Under his captaincy, the Indian team reached new heights in Test cricket.

Till now, the prolific batsman has scored 22818 runs in 435 matches in International cricket. He has maintained an excellent average of 55.78 in these games, and have slammed 70 centuries and 115 half-centuries. India have won 128 of the 200 games under his captaincy.

2020: Rohit Sharma

Indian opener Rohit Sharma is the latest recipient of the Khel Ratna Award. In the 2019 Cricket World Cup, he was the highest run-getter. Rohit scored 648 runs in 9 innings at an average of 81 and a strike rate of 98.33 in the tournament. He also created the record for most centuries (5) in a single edition of the World Cup.

Rohit has been in sublime form since he was given the opening responsibly in ODIs in 2013. He has smashed record three double centuries in the fifty-over format. He was also the first Indian player to feature in 100 T20I matches.

Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award-winning cricketers list


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