The legendary Hockey player and three times Olympian Balbir Singh Dosanjh, also known as Balbir Singh Senior, breathed his last at the age of 95 in Mohali. He had been battling multiple health issues for over two weeks and hence admitted to the Fortis Hospital, Mohali.
Besides being a key player who won three Olympic medal for India, he also served the team as a coach and guided the team to win a gold and a bronze medal in Hockey World Cup of 1975 and 1971 respectively.
A champion throughout his life
Balbir Singh is considered as one of the greatest hockey player of the country, the iconic centre-forward was the only Indian among 16 legends chosen by the International Olympic Committee across modern Olympic history.
Throughout his journey, he dedicated himself for the game. He was part of the three times Olympic gold winning team in 1948, 1952 and 1956 and later after his retirement he coached the Indian Players to win first and only Men’s Hockey World Cup in Malaysia in 1975.
One of his records for most individual goal in an Olympic final remains unbeaten even today. Balbir Singh senior had scored five goals in India’s 6-1 victory over the Netherlands in the gold medal match of the 1952 Helsinki Games.
Defeating Britain in 1948 was one of the greatest
In his prolific career of eleven years, Balbir Singh Senior had scored 246 goals and win 61 caps but according to him defeating Britain in 1948 just after the independence is one of the greatest moments for him.
In an Interview with Sportstar in Feb, he said: “There was no greater joy for me than seeing the tri-colour going up. The National Anthem and the fact that we beat our rulers (British) on their home soil to win and retain the Olympic hockey gold can never be forgotten. Never.”
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