Sania Mirza reacted with delight at her being recommended for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, describing it as the "most amazing" development.
Sania became only the second tennis player to be recommended for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna after a Sports Ministry appointed selection panel named her for the top sporting award of the country.
"Whooaa waking up in Toronto to the most amazing news from back home.. Thank you everyone .. Thank you so much," Sania, who is taking part in a tournament in Toronto, tweeted.
Currently ranked world number one in women's doubles, Sania scripted history by becoming the first Indian to clinch a women's doubles Grand Slam when she partnered Swiss great Martina Hingis for the Wimbledon trophy earlier this year.
The 28-year-old, who has won three mixed doubles Grand Slams in her career, beat competition from squash player Deepika Pallikal, discus thrower Vikas Gowda, track and field star Tintu Luka, rising shuttler P V Sindhu, and hockey captain Sardar Singh for the coveted honour.
Sania's name was recommended by a Sports Ministry- constituted awards committee headed by Justice V K Bali, the retired Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court.
The committee included eminent athletes such as Dola Banerjee, M M Somayya and Bhogeshwar Baruah and sports journalists apart from top officials of the Sports Ministry.