Major Dhyan Chand: The Patriot Hockey Wizard
Major Dhyan Chand, one of India's greatest hockey players, is known for his incredible skill and talent in the sport. He played a pivotal role in leading the Indian hockey team to win three consecutive gold medals in the Olympics. His legacy as a hockey wizard is celebrated every year on his birthday, which is also celebrated as National Sports Day in India.
Dhyan Chand's passion for hockey started at a young age, and he joined the Indian army at the age of 17 to pursue his love for the sport. In those days, hockey was not India's national sport, but Dhyan Chand's talent and dedication helped to put Indian hockey on the world map.
One of the most interesting incidents in Dhyan Chand's career happened during the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany. India had defeated Japan, the US, and Hungary in the earlier rounds and reached the finals against Germany. Adolf Hitler, who was the Chancellor of Germany at that time, had come to witness the match.
The German team had made the pitch wet to make it difficult for India to play. However, Dhyan Chand's skill and expertise in the sport were unmatched, and he played the game without his shoes on. India won the match 4-1, and it is said that Hitler was so impressed with Dhyan Chand's performance that he offered him a place in the German military and a promise of a huge salary.
Dhyan Chand's response was an epitome of patriotism and loyalty to his country. He politely declined the offer, saying that he had eaten the salt of his nation and would always serve and die for his country.
Today, Major Dhyan Chand is a legend in Indian hockey, and his name is synonymous with excellence, dedication, and sportsmanship. The highest award for sports in India, the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award, is conferred in his name. His life and legacy continue to inspire young athletes to pursue their dreams with passion, dedication, and love for their country.