Balbir Singh Sr, legendary hockey player, no more: Prez, Kovind, PM Modi, HM Amit Shah, recalls his memorable contribution to the game


President Ram Nath  Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Mod, Home Minister Amit Shah, Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju have condoled the demise of hockey legend Balbir Singh Sr, one of India’s greatest sporting icons. He passed away on Monday, May 25 at Mohali. He was 96. The much-decorated hockey legend was bedridden with multiple health issues for over two weeks. He was admitted to a hospital in Mohali on May 8 and was in a critical condition after suffering multiple cardiac arrests. Considered legendary centre-forward, he is survived by his daughter Sushbir and three sons Kanwalbir, Karanbir, and Gurbir. His sons are settled in Canada and he lived with his daughter and grandson Kabir. Balbir Singh Sr. played a key role in all three gold-medal-winning performances in the Summer Games. His record for the greatest number of goals scored in an Olympic men’s hockey final stands to this day when he hammered 5 goals in India’s 6-1 victory over the Netherlands in the Gold medal match of the 1952 Helsinki Games. Under his Captaincy, India scored 38 goals and conceded none on its way to the Gold medal in 1956 Melbourne Olympics. One of the country’s most accomplished athletes, Singh was the only Indian among 16 legends chosen by the International Olympic Committee across modern Olympic history.PM Modi said  ” Padma Shri Balbir Singh Sr. Ji will be remembered for his memorable sporting performances. He brought home lots of pride and laurels. Undoubtedly a brilliant hockey player, he also made a mark as a great mentor. Pained by his demise. Condolences to his family and well-wishers’.“Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh also expressed deep sorrow at his passing away. Union Home Minister Amit Shah says Balbir Singh Dosanjh was a three-time Olympic gold champion having played a key role in India’s wins in London, Helsinki, and Melbourne Olympics. Republic world. com recalls ‘’A historical sports drama film titled Gold was released in 2018 which is loosely inspired by the events of India’s success at the 1948 Summer Olympics. Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar headlined Gold by playing the role of Tapan Das, a character who was inspired by India’s coach at the 1948 Olympics, NN Mukherjee. Apart from Akshay Kumar, several other Bollywood stars made quite an ensemble in the movie, which turned out to be a critical and commercial success. Bollywood actor Sunny Kaushal played the role of Himmat Singh. In the movie, Himmat Singh was a character, which was largely based on Balbir Singh Sr.’’

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