Former India captain Sourav Ganguly and tennis ace Leander Paes will be conferred Lifetime Achievement Awards, while successful football coach Subhas Bhowmick will be given 'Guru Ratna' by the state government at a function on September 28.
Reacting to the news, Ganguly said: "I really feel proud to hear this. It's a massive achievement."
Excited to meet Paes who recently won his 14th career Grand Slam by lifting the US Open doubles title, Ganguly further said: "I would tell him '40 is just a number, you should go on playing."
"I would also ask him to spend more time in Kolkata as the city needs him," Ganguly added.
This is for the first time the West Bengal Ministry of Sports has constituted awards in about 50 categories for the sportspersons as chief minister Mamata Banerjee will confer them at the Netaji Indoor Stadium, sports minister Madan Mitra said.
"We will confer sportspersons in various disciplines. We have constituted awards like 'Khel Ratna', 'Banglar Gourav' and 'Guru Ratna' besides the Lifetime Achievement Awards," Mitra said.
The government is also likely to formally announce the upcoming state football academy while about 6,000 clubs will get financial aids.
Talking on cricket, Ganguly on Thursday said that in-form Yuvraj Singh deserves a comeback into the national team. (Read more)
"It's really great to see him bat in full flow once again. I'm not surprised that he's back again. He has 200 per cent chance to make a return," Ganguly said.