History-making Indian hockey captain Rani Rampal wins World Games Athlete of the Year with landslide victory
Indian hockey captain Rani Rampal has been voted World Games' Athlete of the Year, the first hockey player to claim the title.
The 25-year-old was the only Indian athlete among the 25 nominees from various sports and claimed the top spot with an astonishing 199,477 votes in a public vote.
Athletes were nominated by their respective international federations, with Rampal being proposed by the FIH in recognition for her leadership and outstanding performances.
Rampal scored the decisive goal against the USA that ensured her team would be heading to Tokyo 2020, the first time the team have participated at two consecutive Olympics.
The award is in honour of an athlete or team for exemplary social commitment, astonishing displays of sportsmanship or for outstanding performance.
After the award, Rampal said it was a 'privilege and honour' to be given the accolade.
She added: "This award is for my team and for my country.
"It's always nice when your country recognise your effort. It's even better when [the] international sports community recognises it."
"Thank you so much to everyone who has voted for me."
Rampal will receive a trophy and a prize from Protective Life, who sponsor the award.