Hockey, India's national sport, has an incredible history at the Olympics, thanks to Dhyan Chand. The hockey wizard stunned the sporting fraternity with his skills. Birth anniversary of Major Dhyan Chand is celebrated as National Sports Day in India.
As the country celebrates his 111th birth anniversary, here are 10 interesting facts about this once-in-a-lifetime sportsman.
Dhyan Chand was born on 29 August 1905 in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh.
1)Dhayan Chand considered as one the greatest field hockey players of all time.
2)Dhyan Chand was employed by the British Indian Army as a Sepoy at the age of 16.
3)Dhyan Chand helped India in earning three Olympic gold medals (1928, 1932 and 1936).
4)Dhyan Chand was also known as “The Wizard” for his superb ball control.
5) National Hockey stadium in Delhi was renamed as Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in 2002 in his honor.
6) When India beat USA 24-1 in the 1932 Summer Olympics hockey final, Dhyan Chand scored 8 goals, while his brother Roop Singh netted 10. The duo scored a combined 25 goals at the tournament.
7) Impressed by Dhyan Chand's hockey wizardry, Adolf Hitler even offered him German citizenship.
8) Authorities in Netherlands broke Dhyan Chand's hockey stick to inspect if there was a magnet inside it.
9)He scored more than 400 goals in his international career.
10) Dhyan Chand was given the Padma Bhushan award in 1956. However, he is yet to be awarded the Bharat Ratna by the Indian government.