Balkrishan Singh is a quondam field hockey player who hails from India. He participated at the 1956 Summer Olympics as the member of the Indian National field hockey team. Balkrishan Singh is perchance the solitary player to have won the gold medal both as a player and as a coach in the country. He represented the team in the Olympics in 1956. He was also the coach in the 1980 Moscow Olympics, where India won gold.
Early Life of Balkrishan Singh
Balkrishan Singh was born on 10th March in the year 1933. His father, Brigadier Dalip Singh was a long jumper and participated in Olympics in the years 1924 and 1928. Balkrishan Singh studied at the F.C. College in Lahore. In his college he excelled at hockey.
Career Of Balkrishan Singh
In 1955, Balkrishan made his first international hockey debut at Warsaw, Poland. He was the coach of the team that won the gold in the 1980 Moscow Olympics. In the year 1965, Balkrishan even trained the Australian women`s national squad. Malcolm Fraser, the Australian Prime Minister at that time, had praised him for his outstanding abilities as he was so impressed with his abilities. Balkrishan played as an excellent defender at Melbourne Olympics.
Balkrishan appeared for a course in coaching at NIS, Patiala
influenced by the chief coach Dhyan Chand
. He aced with 93 percent marks. Balkrishan Singh tried something new, as in order to gain experience with the concept of total hockey in India. He was the first coach to experiment in the field of Hockey. During the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, he first put this concept into use. The concept of total hockey was unique as he planned to attack together and defend together. At the 1956 Summer Olympics, India won the gold medal. He had also coached the Mexican Olympic team in 1968, leading to a bronze medal.
Balkrishan Singh, considered as one of the legends of Indian hockey, died at the age of 72 on December 2004. Senior SAI hockey coach I.S. Gill, chief coach of the national boxing squad G.S. Sandhu, former chief coach of the Nigerian men`s hockey team Gurdial Singh Sandhu, former chief coach of the NIS Chattarjit Singh, senior athletics coach J.S. Saini and former chief coach of the women`s squad K.S. Bhangu were the first to reach the house.
He was died on Friday, December 31, 2004 in Patiala
. He was 72 then. Balkrishan was administered some medicines during the night by his family members, but his health got deteriorated and in the next morning before he breathed his last.
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