India Hockey

Dhyan Chand

Major Dhyan Chand Singh (August 29, 1905 December 3, 1979) was a former Indian hockey player and is often regarded as the greatest player ever to play the game. He was part of the Gold winning Indian team in three Olympic Games (1928 Amsterdam , 1932 Los Angeles, 1936 Berlin). He was awarded the Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian honour, in 1956. He got the title "Chand" or (moon) from his first coach, Pankaj Gupta, who had predicted that he would one day shine like a chand or moon. Dhyan Chand was affectionately called Dadda.
n a match in 1927 Chand exhibited his skills against the English hockey team, netting 36 of India's 72 goals in 10 matches, at the London Folkstone Festival.
In 1928 Chand was selected to represent the Indian hockey team in the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Chand helped India win the gold medal winning the finals against the Netherlands by a score of 3-0. He played in the centre-forward position and scored two of India's three goals.
In the 1932 Summer Olympics held at Los Angeles, USA, the team under Lal Shah Bukhari defended their title winning the gold. The team routed the United States hockey team 23-1, a world record that stood until 2003. He contributed eight of those goals, and along with his brother Roop Singh formed a formidable core of the team. He scored 12 goals in India's two matches in that Olympics and he had scored 133 goals out of India's 338 in that year.
Dhyan Chand rated Beighton Cup final of 1933 as his most memorable match. The match was played between Jhansi Heroes and Calcutta Customs. Surprisingly, he did not score in that match. He only provided the vital pass for the lone goal scored by the Jhansi Heroes. On their return journey, the Jhansi Heroes were crammed in an unreserved third class compartment. However, the warm welcome received at the station made it the most memorable match for Dhyan Chand.
During a 1935 tour of New Zealand and Australia, he scored 201 goals out of the team's tally of 584 in 43 matches. Don Bradman and Dhyan Chand once came face to face at Adelaide in 1935, when the Indian hockey team was in Australia. After watching Dhyan Chand in action, Don Bradman remarked "He scores goals like runs in cricket".

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