New Delhi:Set to become the first Indian to win all the national sports awards, former All-England badminton champion Pullela Gopichand on Tuesday said being honoured as both player and coach has put a responsibility on him to take the game forward in the country.
"The gravity of the awards doesn't sink in immediately for somebody like me who never thought much about the awards," Gopichand said here.
"For me winning the All England was important. During the Arjuna awards, the feeling sank in much later. But today when I look back at the Arjuna award and Khel Ratna, I feel very proud. It is same with the Dronacharya, It is a huge honour," Gopichand said on the sidelines of the draw ceremony of the World Badminton Championship.
"I will also look at it as a responsibility as well. It is something I am proud of," he added.
Gopichand won the Arjuna award in 1995. He got the country's highest sporting honour, the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, in 2001.
And this year, he has been nominated for the Dronacharya awards. He had also won the Padma Shri in 2005.