Though not that much famous or frequently played in the national and international level, the game of Volleyball is indeed one of the most loved and popular sports amongst all the rural people of India. In fact, this very sport is being played in the rural areas of the country for quite a long period of time. This may be the main reason why the volleyball players always got a place in the winners` list of the "Arjuna Award
" whenever they showed any type of good performances in any level of the game. Hence, the list of the "Arjuna Award" winning volleyball players is not that small at all.
All it started from the year of 1961 when the "Arjuna Award" was first introduced to all the sportspersons of India. In that year A. Palaniswamy became the first volleyball player of India to be the winner of the award. In the year of 1962, Nripjit Singh followed his example and won the award successfully. However, there was quite a long period of gap of about 10 years after the first two volleyball players entered their name in the winners` list. In 1972, Balwant Singh again started the winning streak of the volleyball players by winning the award and once it started, it continued for a few years. In the following year that is in 1973, G.M. Reddy won the award and in 1974, the award went to M.S. Rao. In 1975, there was a double win for the volleyball players of India as Sub. Insp. R. Singh and K.C. Elamma won the award jointly. In 1976, Jimmy George became successful to win the award and he was followed by A. Raman Rao who won it in 1977-78.
The "Arjuna Award" was named after the famous volleyball player Kutty Krishan in the year of 1978-79 and it was named after S.K. Mishra in the very next year. The volleyball players were in another winning streak from the year of 1982 when G.E. Sridharan claimed the award. After him, there were quite a few number of volleyball players who became successful to win the award. Amongst them, R.K. Purohit won it in 1983; Saley Joseph in 1984 and Cyril C. Vallor in the year of 1986. Then after another gap of 3 years and in 1989, Abdul Basith received the award. The award went to the name of Dalel Singh in the very next year in 1990 and in 1991, K. Udaya Kumar won the award. Another volleyball player named as Sukhpal Singh won the "Arjuna Award" in the year of 1999 and thus broke down a huge gap of 8 years. In the following year in 2000, P.V. Ramana became the winner and in 2002, Ravikant Reddy was the last winner of the "Arjuna Award" so far on behalf of all the volleyball players.
The discussion that has been done so far can state one thing that if there is talent than nothing can stop them and this is very much evident from the performances of the volleyball players of India.
||Balwant Singh "Ballu"
||Cyril C. Valloor
||Dalel Singh Ror
||Sub. Insp. R. Singh, K.C. Elamma
||K. Udaya Kumar
||A. Ramana Rao
||K. J. Kapil Dev