Major Dhyanchand was a great Indian sportsperson and the most recognised name in world hockey. He is considered as all time greatest Indian sports person . Here are the 20 less known facts about this great player.
1. He is known as 'Magician of Hockey'. This title was given by an English daily of Netherlands because of his superb control over ball. Newspaper wrote about Dhyanchand before a match in Amsterdam Olympics 1928 " This is not a game of Hockey, but magic. Dhyanchand is in fact the magician of Hockey".
2. It was India vs Germany hockey match in Berlin Olympics 1936. German Chancellor Adolf Hitler closely examined the hockey stick of Major Dhyanchand to check whether Dhyanchand had applied glue on Stick. India bagged Gold beating Germany in Final by 8-1. 5 of them were scored by Dhyanchand itself.
3. He played three Olympics for India 1928 (Amsterdam), 1932 (Los Angles), 1936 (Berlin). India won Gold medal in all the three Olympics.
4. He played 185 international matches between 1926 to 1945 for India and scored 570 international goals. It is unbeatable record since now.
5. ' Chand' title was given by his fellow players, which means 'moon'. This title was given as he used to practice in moon lights as flood lights were not then improved.
6. German Chancellor Adolf Hitler was very much impressed with Major Dhyanchand. During the Berlin Olympics 1936 he offered him top position in German army, if he will join the German Hockey team. But it was greatness of Dhyanchand, who politely denied his proposal to play for German team.
7. His brother Roop Singh was also a great hockey player and considered second in the rank of all time great Indian Hockey players. He played 1932 (Los Angles) and 1936 (Berlin) Olympics for India. India bagged gold in both of the Olympics.
8. His son Ashok Kumar was also a great Indian Hockey player. Under his captain ship India won Gold medal in 1980 Moscow Olympics. Since then Indian hockey team could never manage to win a single medal in Olympics.
9. Major Dhyanchand retired in 1956 as Lieutenant from Indian army.
10. Major Dhyanchand's last days were very miserable. He died at AAIMS, Delhi in 1979.
11. He made no money from sports but he is admired and considered as the greatest Indian sportsperson.
12. The national stadium of Delhi was named as Major Dhyanchand stadium in his honour.
13. Netherlands government honoured him with statue.
14. London Gym khana stadium was named as Dhyanchand stadium.
15. His birthday is celebrated as National Sports Day.
16. Dhyanchand award, Rajiv Gandhi khel ratna purashkar, Arjun Award is given by Indian president on the occasion of his birth anniversary every year.
17. He was the first sportsperson whose name was forwarded for Bharat Ratna but because of dirty politics Sachin Tendulkar was bestowed over him. It was almost done that Dhyanchand would be honoured with Bharat Ratna in 2014 as he was only person from sports whose name was recommended by Sports ministry. But at last time Sachin Tendulkar was given 'Bharat Ratna'.
18. He was born in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh and brought to Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh as his father was posted in Indian Army Jhansi unit.
19. He had started his career with Indian army as a jawan.
20. It was 1928 Los Angles Olympics, India beat USA host country by 24-1. It was world record until it was broken in 2003.