After making the transition from being a "nobody" to one of India's most followed athletes, London Olympics silver medallist Vijay Kumar says the achievement has given him the "recognition" that was missing despite his feats at other international events in the past.
The shooter was on Saturday nominated for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, the country's highest sporting honour, along with wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt who clinched a bronze in London.
"Now people won't have to google my name. Suddenly, the world has recognised me, they are thinking that there is someone called Vijay Kumar, he is something," the shooter, who shot the silver in 25m rapidfire pistol event, Vijay told PTI here on Saturday.
On being congratulated for being nominated for Khel Ratna, Vijay said, "I got the honour for the highest achievement in sports. I had spoken to the HP CM Prem Kumar Dhumal from London and he forwarded my nomination.
"Now finally the world has taken note of me as it's the biggest achievement of my career. Earlier also I have won many medals. I am happy to be honoured," the unassuming shooter said on the sidelines of a felicitation function at the FICCI auditorium.
Vijay has won a staggering eight gold medals in the past two years at various international tournaments, including three in the 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games.
Even as the celebration continues, the army shooter is set to join work at 16 Dogra Regiment at Mhow. He said his next competitive assignment is the World Cup finals at Bangkok in two months' time.
Fellow marksman and another London Games participant, Sanjeev Rajput said that the shooting team was always confident that Vijay would win the medal once in the final.
"He normally plays well in the finals, so we were pretty confident that he would win a medal," Rajput said.