Hockey Legend: Dhyan Chand

Hockey Legend: Dhyan Chand

Major Dhyan ‘Chand’ Singh, an Indian hockey player, earned widespread recognition as the greatest player of all time. He achieved legendary status as a center-forward, remembered for his remarkable goal-scoring feats both as a player and later as captain. Chand secured three Olympic gold medals (1928 Amsterdam, 1932 Los Angeles, 1936 Berlin) and received the Padma Bhushan, India’s third highest civilian honor, in 1956. He also happened to be the elder brother of the equally famous fellow player Roop Singh.

He got the title ‘???’ or Chand (literally Moon) from his first coach, Pankaj Gupta, who had predicted that he would one day shine like one. Even today, Chand remains a figure of veneration, and a number of legends about him are famous in the realm of Indian sport.


Even today, Dhyan Chand remains a legendary figure in Indian and world hockey. His astounding skills have been glorified in various apocryphal stories and anecdotes. A number such legends revolve around the fact that Singh had a magical control over dribbling the ball. Many say that the German Olympic officials broke his hockey stick to search for a magnet inside, and tried to console themselves saying he had added some sort of glue.

A larger than life statue of Dhyan Chand in his hometown of Jhansi

  1. On December 3, 1980, the Indian Postal Service released a postage stamp in his honor, exactly a year after he died.
  2. The Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi, named in his honor, also features a dominating statue of Chand at its entrance.
  3. In 2005, another statue was erected in Medak, Andhra Pradesh.
  4. India celebrates August 29 as National Sports Day, in honor of Chand’s birthday. On this day, the President awards sport-related honors, such as the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Arjuna Award, and Dronacharya Award, at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  5. The Dhyan Chand Award, India’s highest award for lifetime achievement in sports, has been awarded annually since 2002 to sporting figures who not only contribute through their performance but also contribute to the sport after their retirement.

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Written by arun_pandit

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