Sportswoman of the Year nominees: Smashing Saina, magnificent Manika & more

From Saina Nehwal's sensational comeback year to Manika Batra stealing the show in the TT arenas at the CWG and Asian Games, here are the nominations for the Sportsperson of the Year (female).

Manika Batra

Manika Batra was at the heart of India's table tennis resurgence in 2018 as she won the country's first-ever medal -- a bronze along with Achanta Sharath Kamal -- in the mixed doubles event at the Asian Games. She was also India's most successful athlete at the Commonwealth Games with four medals -- gold in the women's singles and women's team event, silver in women's doubles and a bronze in the mixed doubles.

Related: The long-distance weapon that helped Manika conquer Gold Coast

MC Mary Kom

India's most decorated boxer Mary Kom defeated Ukraine's Hanna Okhota 5-0 to win gold in the 45-48kg category at the World Championships in New Delhi last year. With that win, Mary, at 35 and a mother of three, became the most successful female boxer at the championships. She was previously tied at five gold medals with Northern Ireland's Katie Taylor. She has now won six of India's total tally of nine golds at the Worlds. Earlier in the year, she defeated Northern Ireland's Kristina O'Hara 5-0 to become the first the first Indian female boxer to win gold at the Commonwealth Games.

Related: Mary Kom wins historic sixth gold at Boxing World Championships

PV Sindhu

PV Sindhu became the first Indian to win a World Tour Finals title when she won her first major title of 2018 in style after defeating Japan's Nozomi Okuhara in the final in December. She also won silver medals at the Asian Games, Commonwealth Games and the World Championships besides finishing runner-up at the India Open and the Thailand Open.

Related: 'No more silver in headlines; this time it's gold' - PV Sindhu

Saina Nehwal

Saina Nehwal had an inspired run through most of 2018, winning the women's singles title at the Commonwealth Games and becoming the first Indian woman to secure a badminton medal at the Asian Games with her bronze in the women's singles in Jakarta. She also became the first Indian to win two singles golds at the Commonwealth Games. In addition, she won bronze at the Asian Championships and finished runner-up at the Indonesia Masters and Denmark Open.

Related: Saina back to her best, but Tai Tzu Ying still a notch above rest

Swapna Barman

Swapna Barman scripted history by becoming the first Indian woman to win gold in the heptathlon event at the Asian Games. What made the achievement even more special was the fact that Barman had to overcome an excruciating toothache caused by an abscessed molar to win, even as her jaw was taped up.

Related: Wonder woman Swapna Barman overcomes pain barrier

Vinesh Phogat

Vinesh Phogat became the first Indian woman to win a wrestling gold at the Asian Games after defeating Japan's Yuki Irie in a dramatic final. She also got gold at the Commonwealth Games earlier in the year, as well as gold at the Spanish Grand Prix in a remarkable comeback post a career-threatening injury at the Rio Olympics.

Related: Vinesh Phogat scripts her own redemption story