The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has recommended the name of pace spearhead Zaheer Khan for the Arjuna Award.
"We have recommended only one name, that of Zaheer Khan, for the Arjuna Award," BCCI's Chief Administrative Officer Ratnakar Shetty told PTI on Tuesday.
The 32-year-old Shrirampur-born Zaheer, who made his international debut in 2000, would be the 44th cricketer to be bestowed with the award if the government accepts the BCCI's recommendation.
Six current India players - Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, V V S Laxman, Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh and Gautam Gambhir - have been past recipients of the government's honour for their outstanding achievement in the sport.
Zaheer has been India's go-to man in recent years, playing a big role in the side's overseas Test wins that have helped them climb to the top of the rankings.
Since re-establishing himself in the Test side in 2007, he has been Man of the Series on three occasions, and has also mentored the younger fast bowlers in the side. In ODIs since the beginning of 2010, he has picked up 41 wickets from 24 games, averaging 25.07. Twenty-one of those wickets came in India's victorious World Cup campaign, making him the tournament's joint-leading wicket-taker alongside Shahid Afridi.
Last year woman cricketer Jhulan Goswami was conferred with the award on the recommendation of the board.