When it’s cricket it’s always Sachin Tendulkar and when it’s hockey it’s undoubtedly Major Dhyan Chand. Every hockey fanatic swears by the goal scored by the legendary Dhyan Chand against Germany during the 1936 Berlin Olympics. He is not only the God of Hockey, but one of the best sportsmen produced by the country. Rightfully known as the wizard of Indian Hockey, he was instrumental in bringing India to the forefront at the Olympics. Here are the reasons why he is known as the God of Hockey:
6. The Most Amazing Entry Into Hockey
Dhyan Chand’s entry into the world of Hockey was nothing short of a movie script. He was not much into sports, but interested in wrestling. He started playing hockey with his friends with hockey sticks made out of the branches of trees. It was only during a visit to a hockey match at the age of 14 that things took a turn. One team was down by two goals and Dhyan insisted his father to let him play for them. An Army Officer allowed him in and he scored 4 goals to make the team win ultimately. Isn’t it absolutely filmy?
5. Started Learning Hockey After Entering The Punjab Regiment As A Sepoy
The Army Officer who allowed him inside the match was too impressed with the little boy’s skills and offered him a post in the Punjab Regiment. At the age of 16 in the year 1922, Dhyan Chand was a Sepoy in the Punjab Regiment. Inside the army camp Dhyan Chand got a mentor in Subedar-Major Bhole Tiwari of Brahmin Regiment who taught him the basics of hockey. However, Pankaj Gupta was the first coach that Chand got. He predicted that Chand would one day shine like the moon (moon is ‘chand’ in Hindi). After this he was named Dhyan Chand from Dhyan Singh (his original name).
4. Began His First International Tour With 100 Goals
Dhyan Chand was selected for the Indian Hockey team which was supposed to tour New Zealand in the year 1926. India had played 21 matches in that tournament out of which they won 18 matches, lost 1 and drew 2. India had scored a total of 192 goals out of which Dhyan Chand was responsible for 100 goals. Beat that! In a single match where India had scored 20 goals, Dhyan Chand had scored 10. Now this is just one example out of hundreds. Many tours followed this where he scored half the goals scored by India. Isn’t he the unsung hero of Indian sports?
3. Beginning Of His Rule Over The Olympic Games
The 1928 and 1932 Olympics proved to the world Dhyan Chand’s mastery over the game. He scored 2 out of the total number of 3 goals in the finals of the Amsterdam Olympic Games in the year 1928. Hence India won the Gold Medal by defeating Netherlands 3-0. The 1932 Los Angeles Olympics also saw a gold medal win by India and a creation of a world record of 23 goals in a single match which was recently in the year 2003 broken. It was against USA that India scored 23 goals. And you thought such things happen only in the movies?
2. The Historic win at the 1936 Berlin Olympics
India had gone on to play the finals against Germany without conceding a single goal at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. They reached the finals after defeating France by 10 goals. Till the interval of the final match India could score only 1 goal which was disappointing till now. After the interval Dhyan Chand removed his shoes and India won the gold medal by defeating Germany 8-1. This easily can be declared the most dramatic and adrenaline-pumping final match of any game.
1. From Adolf Hitler To Don Bradman – He’s Left Everyone Amazed
It is said that Adolf Hitler, the German dictator, had offered Dhyan Chand a higher post in the German army than that which he was holding in the Indian army. But our hero had courteously denied the offer. Don Bradman, the cricket legend of Australia, had said that Dhyan Chand scores goals as if he’s scoring runs in a cricket match after watching the maestro play. It is shocking that a legend like him who is coveted throughout the world died in a general bed of a hospital. It’s time we give him the honour he deserves.