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Dhyan Chand

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Dhyan Chand
Birth nameDhyan Singh
NicknameThe Wizard
Born(1905-08-29)29 August 1905
Allahabad, United Provinces, British India
Died3 December 1979(1979-12-03) (aged 74)[1]
Delhi, India
Allegiance India
Service/branch British Indian Army
 Indian Army
Years of service1921–1956
UnitPunjab Regiment
Dhyan Chand
SportField hockey
Medal record
Men's Field Hockey
Representing  India
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1928 Amsterdam Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1932 Los Angeles Team
Gold medal – first place 1936 Berlin Team

Dhyan Chand (29 August 1905 – 3 December 1979) was an Indian field hockey player. He is known as the greatest field hockey player of all time.[2][1][3][4] His skill is compared to footballer Pelé.[5][6][3]

His birthday, 29th August, is celebrated as National Sports Day in India every year.[7][8] He received the Padma Bhushan from the Government of India in 1956.[9]

Chand earned three Olympic gold medals in field hockey. These were at the 1928, 1932, and 1936 games.[10]

Early life[change | change source]

Dhyan Chand was born on 29 August 1905 in Allahabad. His father was in the British Indian Army, and he played hockey in the army. The family moved often because of army transfers. The family finally settled in Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, India.[1]

Chand joined the Indian Army at the age of 16.[5] The Hindi word Chand literally means "the moon". Dhyan was given the nickname Chand because he would wait until the moon was out so that he could practice hockey.[4][5]

International competitions[change | change source]

Chand's first international competition was with the Indian Army in New Zealand.[1] The army later gave Chand permission to compete for a place on the Indian Olympic team for field hockey.

During the 1928 Olympics, Chand was the top scorer of the tournament, scoring 14 goals in five matches. A newspaper report about India's triumph said, “This is not a game of hockey, but magic. Dhyan Chand is in fact the magician of hockey.”[4][5]

Chand was selected for the 1932 Olympic team without a tryout.[11] The team once again won the gold medal. In the final on 11 August, India played against hosts USA. India won 24-1, a world record at the time.[12]

Chand was again selected without tryout for the 1936 Olympic team.[13] India defeated Germany 8-1 in the final for the gold medal. Chand scored three goals.[14]

Legacy[change | change source]

The Dhyan Chand Award is given in India for lifetime achievement in sports.[15] The National Stadium, Delhi was renamed Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in 2002 in his honour.[16][17]

Family[change | change source]

Chand's younger brother, Roop Singh, played on the Indian Field Hockey team in the 1932 and 1936 Olympics.[18] His son, Ashok Kumar (field hockey), won an Olympic bronze medal in 1972 for field hockey.[19]

Autobiography[change | change source]

Chand's autobiography, Goal!, was published by Sport & Pastime, Madras in 1952.[12]

Other websites[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Dharma Raja, M.K. "Hockey Wizard Dhyan Chand Remembered". Press Information Bureau. Government of India. Archived from the original on 1 April 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  2. Dhaliwal, Ravi (August 29, 2009). "DHYAN CHAND — Player, legend and the man". The Tribune. Archived from the original on 20 October 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Discover hockey's answer to Pele". BBC. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "National Sports Day 2017: Remembering 'The Wizard' Major Dhyan Chand on his birthday". Daily Hunt. 29 August 2017. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Bhushan, Niket (1992). "Dhyan Chand - The Legend Lives On". Wiley Eastern Ltd. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  6. Sharma, Aman (Nov 18, 2013). "Bharat Ratna: Does hockey legend late Dhyan Chand deserve it more than cricketing icon Sachin Tendulkar?". Economic Times. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  7. "National Sports Day 2017: Here's Why Dhyan Chand's Birthday Is Recognised As Rashtriya Khel Divas". August 29, 2017. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  8. "Dhyan Chand". Hockey India. Archived from the original on 10 December 2017. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  9. "Padma Awards Directory (1954-2013)" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs. 14 August 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  10. "Dhyan Chand". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  11. Bhushan, Niket (1992). "Dhyan Chand - The Legend Lives On". Wiley Eastern Ltd. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  12. 12.0 12.1 "Goal! by Dhyan Chand". Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  13. Bhushan, Niket (1992). "Dhyan Chand - The Legend Lives On". Wiley Eastern Ltd. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  14. "Dhyan Chand". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  15. "Scheme for the Dhyan Chand Award for Lifetime Achievement in Sports and Games" (PDF). Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. 2016-03-02. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  16. "National Stadium, New Dehli". Schréder. Archived from the original on 18 September 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  17. "Even Bradman was impressed with Dhyan Chand". Times of India. Aug 30, 2011. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  18. "Roop Singh". IOC. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  19. "Ashok Kumar". IOC. Retrieved 29 November 2017.