Hockey Icon Balbir Singh Sr passes away at the age of 96.Three times Olympics gold medal-winning hockey legend Balbir Singh Sr passes away on Monday after battling multiple health issues for over two weeks.
- Indian hockey great Balbir Singh passed away on Monday
- Balbir Singh Sr. battled multiple health issues over 2 weeks
- Balbir Sr was in a semi-comatose state since May 18
- Balbir Singh Sr was Three times Olympics gold medal winner
The iconic player was 96 and is survived by his daughter Sushbir and three sons Kanwalbir,Karanbir,Gurbir.
One of the Country’s greatest athletes, Balbir Sr was the only Indian among 16 legends chosen by the International Olympic Committee across modern Olympic history.
He made a world record for most goals scored by an individual in the men’s hockey fiinal of the Olympics still remain unbeaten.
Born on December 31, 1923 to Sardar Dalip Singh and Karam Kaur at his maternal village of Haripur Khalsa, Singh went on to become one of the best centre forwards India has produced.
He had started his career as a goalkeeper with his school team at Moga before playing as a defender and later a centre forward. As a five-year-old, Singh was given a hockey stick by his freedom fighter father and he recalled it fondly in his autobiography “The Golden Hat-trick”.
Balbir Singh Senior breathed his last at a Mohali hospital on Monday morning. He was 96. Singh, who was member of the 1948 London Olympics gold medal-winning Indian hockey team, apart from being the vice-captain of the 1952 victorious side and skipper of the 1956 champions.
He had been admitted to the hospital earlier this month on May 8 due to pneumonia and was on ventilator support. He passed away at 6:17 am on Monday.
At the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, Singh, now the captain of the team, scored five goals against Afghanistan in India’s opening match before being injured. He played in the semifinal against Germany and final against Pakistan with an injured right hand as India won their sixth Olympic gold medal.