Earlier, in the name of the history of hockey in India, the Baton Cup was played in Calcutta and the Aga Khan Cup was played in Bombay (Mumbai). The Indian Hockey Federation was formed in 1925 and the Indian team landed in the 1928 Olympics under the captaincy of Jaipal Singh Munda.
India won gold in six consecutive Olympics
When the Indian team was leaving for Amsterdam via London, no one expected him to win a medal and three people had come to bid him farewell. But on his return with the gold medal, thousands of people had gathered at Bombay Port to welcome him. Hockey had started climbing over the Indians and after that with gold in six consecutive Olympics, hockey wrote the golden chapter of India’s performance in the Olympics.
Dhyan Chand came out as a superstar
Dhyan Chand’s son Ashok Kumar told Bhasha that in fact the foundation for the inclusion of hockey in the Olympics was in 1926 when the Indian Army team visited New Zealand. The enthusiasm of the audience and the news of the game of Indians reached European countries and played an important role. Dhyan Chand scored the most goals at the Amsterdam Olympics with 14 goals, including two goals against the Netherlands in the final.
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India did not lose a single goal in the tournament. Dhyan Chand’s skill had made the opposing teams also admired and after the end of the game, the name of this slender Indian player was on everyone’s tongue. Ashok said that only 100-150 people gathered to watch the first match but 20 in the final. More than a thousand spectators were in the stadium. Dhyan Chand was called the magician of hockey, people touching his hockey stick and the dominance of Indian hockey started from there.
Such was the journey of India in the 1928 Olympics
Nine nations that participated in the 1928 Olympic hockey event were divided into two groups. The winner of the group got a place in the final and the runner-up in the bronze medal match. India won all the matches in the group stage. In the first match, India faced Austria, in which Dhyan Chand scored four, Shaukat Ali scored one goal and Maurice Gately scored one goal.
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India won that match 6-0. After this, Belgium was defeated 9-0 in which Firoz Khan scored five and Dhyan Chand scored one goal. In the third match, the match was against Denmark and four goals from Dhyan Chand helped India win 5-0. In the last match, Switzerland was defeated by six goals, half of which were from Dhyan Chand. The Indian team defeated hosts Netherlands 3-0 in the final, with two goals scored by Dhyan Chand and one by George Martins.