The greatest wins at Olympic Games by Indian hockey men’s team
The Indian hockey men’s team has a rich history in Olympic Games. They have won eight gold medals in the Olympic Games.
They won six in a row, from 1928 to 1956, and two more gold medals in 1964 and 1980. India have qualified for the 2020 Olympic Games as well.
Here’s a list of greatest wins at Olympic Games by the Indian hockey men’s team:
Gold at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin
India won gold medals in the previous two editions, Amsterdam in 1928 and in Los Angeles in 1932. With Dhyan Chand set to retire post the Berlin Games, the team was under pressure to give a fitting farewell to the one of the greatest hockey players ever.
Chand was handed the captaincy in Berlin Games and he led from the front. The team scored 30 goals and conceded none till the final. In the title round, Chand scored a hat-trick as the Indian team defeated hosts Germany 8-1 to record a hat-trick of titles.
Gold at the London Olympics in 1948
It was the first Olympic Games India participated as a free nation. The tournament saw the emergence of another sporting Indian hero in Balbir Singh Sr.
After destroying all opponents en-route to the final, India faced their old rulers Great Britian in the title round.
Despite host Great Britain receiving great support from the home fans, India team were up for challenge. They destroyed their opponents 4-0 to seal their fourth straight gold. Balbir scored twice in the final.
Gold at the Melbourne Games in 1956
India were the most dominating hockey team then. And they showed their class, beating Singapore 6-0, Afghanistan 14-0, and USA 16-0 in the first three league matches.
They then defeated Germany in the semis to set up a title clash with arch-rivals Pakistan. Captain Balbir Singh Sr had suffered a fracture in his right hand ahead of the final, but played through the pain to help India beat Pakistan 1-0 in the title round and bag their sixth Olympic gold.
Gold at Tokyo Games in 1964
India had lost the final at Rome Games in 1960 to Pakistan. And they again faced Pakistan in the final in the 1964 Games for the third straight time.
India defeated Australia 3-1 in the semis to book a final berth. In the final, India got lucky with a penalty stroke to take a 1-0 lead. India then survived a series of attack from Pakistan to make their 1-0 lead a winning one. Indian goalkeeper Shankar Laxman played his role to perfection to deny Pakistan.
Photo courtesy: Hockey India Facebook page