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The World of Sports :: HALL OF FAME !!!

Ideal Singh

Great Sikh Personalities in Sports :: HALL OF FAME !!!  

  1. 1.

    • FAUJA SINGH, The Marathon Runner with a mission...
    • AJIT PAL SINGH in Hockey

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Let us discuss all about the World of Sports...

Do you also remember any Sikh sportsperson (She or He), whom Sikhs can be proud off...

The HALL OF FAME will continue to grow as we discover about them...

Happy Reading...

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Yeah ofcourse I will provide more info on these sortspersons... The list of four persons in the Poll is not exaustive... I will addup as we find other names to mention... Perhaps you all can suggest somenames...

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Here is something about Milkha Singh the one and only "FLYING SIKH"...

Milkha Singh can be described as one of the most extraordinary athletes of our times. Milkha Singh was a genius and a genius is never trained. Without any formal training, without any financial reward and without any emotional support (he lost his parents during Partition and he had only an elder brother and a sister to look for help) Milkha Singh took on the greatest athletes of his time and proved himself as good if not better. The burst of speed with which he broke the previous Olympic Games record of 5.9 seconds in 400 meters is now a part of folk lore in Punjab. The fairy tale is repeated as part of Punjab's rich heritage. Milkha is no less popular than Pele in Brazil and Maradona in Argentina. Generation after generation in India will remember fondly his exploits with which he set the tracks ablaze whenever and wherever he ran. Rarely has it happened in the Olympic history when so many athletes went on to break the greatest race of his time, this he had to, since he had to, since he had on blocks with him world's greatest athletes of his time. Who would have dared to challenge their might, expect Milkha, who though respected them yet never feared them. He simply ran-SUPERB.

In the first heat in the Rome Olympics in 190 Milkha Singh clocked 47.6 seconds to finish second. In the second round heat Milkha cut off a few second to finish second to Karl Kaufman of Germany with a timing of 46.5 seconds. In the semifinal Milkha ran shoulder to shoulder with Ottis Davis of the USA to Finnish once again second but he further clipped a few more seconds from his early timing (45.9) .In the final Milkha Singh went off the blocks and took an early lead. Midway he slowed down a bit. This proved his undoing because other athletes went past him. Realising his miscalculation, Mikha drew out every ounce of energy for the final burst but failed to retrieve the lost ground. How fiercely was the race run by runners of such high order can be gauged from the fact that the winner Ottis Davis and Kaufman clocked 44.8 seconds to finish first and second in 400 meters while Mel Spence of South Africa timed 45.5 seconds to finish third. Milkha Singh who actually led the pack was untimely fourth, timing 45.6 seconds, a difference of just 0.1 second from the bronze. Thus upto the final he clocked 47.6, 46.5, 45.9 and 45.6 seconds, clocking a better timing in every outing.

Talking about the race Milkha Singh explained that he found himself running at a reckless speed in the initial stages of the race. Thus he tried to slow down a bit and this proved to be a big error of judgement on his part. Pitted against athletes of such high class only a small error separated the winner from the loser.

Twenty eight years have passed since Milkha hung his spikes yet no athlete has ever gone nearer Milkha's magical timing. He was a product of that time when no facilities existed, no coach available, no reward offered and no job secured, yet armed only with an iron will and the will to draw his own course, Milkha reversed the movement of the wheels of destiny.

Born at Layallpur, now in Pakistan, on October 8, 1935, Milkha Singh shot into limelight during the National Games at Patiala in 1956. Two years later he shattered the 200 and 400 meters record in the National games at Cuttack. The same year he established new records in the 200 and 400 meters in the Asian games at Tokyo. He followed it up with a gold in the Commonwealth Games at Cardiff in 1958. How did he come to be known as the "Flying Sikh"?. Milkha Singh was participating in the Indo-Pak duel meet at Lahore when he outran Asia's most celebrated athlete in the 200 meters, Abdul Khaliq of Pakistan. It was said that Milkha did not run the race but he flew.

Milkha Singh is sad to find that his exploits and achievements have not gone so far to inspire the younger generation. He is critical of the young athletes who aspire to reach the top via short cut and refuse to sweat out in the field. The government offers a number of facilities, there are a number of awards and scholarships, professional colleges offer seats to sportsman, jobs are secured for them, yet sportsmen of high order never emerge. It is the age of mediocrity.

Milkha Singh is, at present, Additional Director of Sports and Youth Programme, Education Department. Married to former international player, Nirmal, he has one son and three daughters. His son, Chiranjeev Milkha Singh, is a top golfer and represented India in the Beijing Asian Games in 1990.

Hardly anyone knows in India why Milkha Singh was so popular in the 1960 Rome Olympics. The moment he would enter the stadium, the people would cheer him most enthusiastically. After all Milkha Singh was not the world's top athlete, no doubt he was among the top runners in the world. Though Rome saw the assembly of top athletes, yet no athlete could draw as much response from the crowd as Milkha Singh.

The real reason for Milkha Singh to be extremely popular among the people was that Milkha Singh had long hair and beard. People in Rome had not seen any athlete with a hair do on his head. They thought the man was a saint. So they wondered how a saint could run so fast. In addition to that none in Rome had any knowledge about Sikhism. The people often came to Milkha Singh and asked why he grew long hair. What is a Sikh, what is Sikhism, they hardly understood anything about the young religion. Milkha Singh enlightened them as much as he could. Yet the people remained as curious as ever.

Besides, Mulkha Singh had embarked on a European tour before landing in Rome. He had won a number of races on route to Rome. Since he had made some of the top athletes lick the dust in a number of competitions, his popularity had spread far and wide even before he reached Rome. In the Olympics too Milkha Singh ran true to his form and ruined the reputation of some of the established stars. Almost all Sikh athletes and sportsmen tied a handkerchief on their hair-do since 'patka' was unknown in those days. Thus Milkha Singh 's different headgear and his athletic exploits made him the darling of the crowd both on and off the track. Milkha Singh himself admits that he was popular because of being a Sikh. The long hair and the bread fascinated the Romans.

Milkha Singh had so much conditioned himself that at any given time and place he could run two races in a day. This superiority of strength had enabled him to win a number of races in the world. However, this superiority did not stand him in good stead at Rome for the simple reason that there was a gap of two days between semifinal and final races. This made Milkha Singh nervous. He felt very dispirited and off-colour. A day before the race Milkha Singh felt disturbed . But at that time a Punjab minister, Mr Umrao Singh, Who was the then president of the All-India Athletics Association,came into his room and took him out for fresh air. This eased the tension a bit and his mind was taken off the competition. The minister took him to some of the wonderful places of the city of Rome and later dropped him at his hotel.

Though Milkha Singh was feeling normal the next day, luck did not help him a bit. While other top athletes got better lanes, Milkha Singh was placed in the fifth. The lot put a German athlete in the first lane, the American in the second, a Pole in the third and South African in the fourth while the second German athlete was placed in the sixth lane. According to Milkha's assessment, the German was the weakest of all the other athletes. Thus being in the fifth lane, Milkha could only see the second German athlete. Thus a weak athlete in front was no advantage.

Therefore, Milkha Singh took off the blocks with a great burst of speed, and managed to lead the pack within 200 metres. But Milkha Singh was running at a dangerously fast speed, so he thought of slowing down a bit. As soon as he checked his speed, in a flash three runners, he failed to erase the deficit of five or six yards in the last 100 meters. Since he found it impossible to catch up with the first two athletes, Milkha Singh tried to outpace South Africa's Melcolm Spence whom he had beaten in the Commonwealth Games. But as ill-luck would have it, Spence got himself into the first two runners and Milkha found himself unable to catch up with. Almost all the first four athletes crossed the line one after another. It was a photo finish. Thus the announcement was held up. When the film was washed and the results were announced, the world of Milkha Singh lay shattered. In sheer despair Milkha Singh took to drinking to drown his disappointment. No matter how hard he tried he failed to remove the scar of defeat from his mind.

Two events stand out clear in the life of Milkha Singh, one the Partition when his parents were butchered, and second the defeat at Rome. Therefore, when an invitation came Milkha Singh's way to run in Pakistan, he was not enthusiastic about it. He hated the place for; he had lost his parents and other relatives in a traumatic experience. However, he was persuaded to run against Asia's best runner, Abdul Khaliq of Pakistan. Khaliq was the best runner that Pakistan had produced and he had a string of victories in the 200 metres in Asia.

But as the 200 meters race began, Milkha Singh outpaced the Pakistani from the word `go' and won in one of the most convincing manners. The people were wonder struck at the pace at which Milkha Singh had run the race. It was announced that Milkha had not run but had flown. It was during this race that Milkha Singh earned the `title' of the "Flying Sikh." The whole stadium was packed to capacity and the people had gathered to se the key contest between two of Asia's finest runners. So when the Indian runner breasted the tape, the 30,000 burqa-clad women uncovered their faces to have a clear view of the Sikh wonder athlete . Milkha Singh was taken to the VIP gallery and introduced to Pakistan President General Ayub who was himself present at the stadium in Lahore.

Milkha Singh was awarded the prestigious 'Padam Shri' by the President of India in 1958 when he won the gold medal in the British and Commonwealth Games till now.

All medals and trophies won by Milkha Singh, including the running shoes with which he broke the world record, blazers and uniforms have been donated by him to the National Sports Museum at the Jawajarlal Nehu Stadium, New Delhi.

Milkha Singh has keen desire to witness an Indian athlete win a gold Medal in the Olympic Games, a target which just slipped away from his hand by slight error of judgement.

After retirement Milkha Singh wants to set up an athletic academy in or around Chandigarh so that he can end the draught of top athletes.

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Here is something about Surjit Singh...

The opinion may be divided among hockey fans as to who was the best deep defender between Prithipal Singh and Surjit Singh. However, none can deny that both possessed extraordinary skill, sound tackling and fine recovery besides unleashing thouderbolts from the heavy blades of their sticks.

Both served the country in the Olympics Games and a host of international tournaments with deep commitment to the game, It was tragic that Surjit Singh after his retirement from the game, died in a road accident near Kartarpura in Jalandhar district while arranging to organise his benefit tie at Jalandhar.

While Surjit Singh was unassuming and soft spoken, he had great differences with Indian Hockey federation bosses over the raw deal given to the hockey players. Like Bishan Singh Bedi in cricket, Surjit always upheld the player's cause. He was pained to find how hockey players were treated like 'herd of cattle'. Frustrated and disillusioned, Surjit Singh hung his stick during the prime time of his carrer.

Born on October 10, 1951, Surjit Singh played for Guru Nanak Dev University and later for Combined Universities team. Being talented he played a compact game from the very beginning and did not have to exert much to catch the selectors' eye. Once in the national team he did not look back and gave dazzling performance during his short but eventful career during which he became the players' spokesman. Surjit Singh made his debut internationally in the second World Cup Hockey Tournament in Amsterdam in 1973. He was a member of the Indian team which under the leadership of charismatic leader Ajit Pal Singh won the third World Cup Hockey Tournament at Kuala Lumpur in 1975. Later, he participated in the fifth World Cup Hockey Tournament, the 174 and 1978 Asian Games. He once again played under the leadership of Ajit Pal Singh in the Montreal Olympic Games in 1976 when Indian hockey nosedived.

Surjit Singh was acclaimed as one of the best full backs in the world. In 1973 he was included in the World Hockey XI. Next year he was a member of the All-Star Hockey XI. Surjit Singh was also the top scorer-both in the Esanda International hockey Tournament at Perth in Australia and the 1978 Asian Games.

Surjit Singh served the Indian Airlines for a few years. Later he joined the Punjab Police. Surjit was simple but he endeared himself to many with his pleasing personality. The world was shocked when it came to know about his death in such tragic circumstances. However, soon friends and fans got together to form the Surjit Singh Memories fresh by organising a highly competitive tournament. With Mr Jagir Puri as its secretary and the current India hockey captain Pargat Singh as a Vice-President, the society has not only been organising high-class competition year after year, it has also been holding camps for junior boys to make hockey stronger at the grassroots level. The society's fine functioning has given such impetus to the game in the region that bright and talented players are coming up in every age group. What better tribute will be to Surjit Singh who always considered it a sacred duty to fight for the cause of hockey and the players' rights.

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Here is something about Bishen Singh Bedi...

On a winter evening in 1979, a cricketer after a strenuous workout session was returning to a pavilion in Delhi when suddenly three small boys hardly in their teens, with muddy faces whispered his name and then giggled. The man at once broke his company, gave an affectionate pat on each head and then shook their rough hands as the juvenile souls stood dazed in amazement.

While travelling in a train, an up-and coming cricketer jokingly asked this man why he was carrying a bat which was of little use to him as he batted at the end for a few seconds, sometimes playing just a ball or two. Smilingly, the man obliged the young cricketer who stood surprised at the former's gesture.

After finishing his assignment with a country club in England, this man on his way back purchased a set of wicket-keeper a gloves for a promising lad, son of a groundsman, on his own.

A Mohammedan boy lay ill in a Karachi hospital a few years ago with no hope of survival. The reason? Blood group 'O' was available neither at hospital nor was anybody ready to donate a few drops to save his precious life. Suddenly the boy's parents got an anonymous cal. Startled, the parents asked who he was. The voce at the other end said:"A man." In a few minutes the man appeared on the scene for donating his blood to save the life of someone who did not belong to his faith even.

Who was this man, involved in some out ---of the book incidents cited above? Certainly, he was none other than Bishan Singh Bedi, one of the all-time greats in the annals of international cricket. India has produced bowlers, say spinners of great merit but Bedi had no peers, he was a cut above the rest.

A bowler of extra-ordinary potential with extra-ordinary sight, a fine patka over his long hair wound in a knot at the to. Bedi bowled and baffed many a great bat in the world. In a clockwork precision, Bedi bowled overs as no other bowler would do, maintaining a computerised length and direction, weaving a magic web with his vicious deliveries around the players' legs. He razed to dust the reputation of some, while he made other stalwarts look pedestrians before him. He flighted the ball giving a lot of air to it. Batsmen who plundered runs at will before, were suddenly found lacking in the art and science of the game when Bedi came to bowl. Great cricketers like Australia's Doung Walters found himself many times bowled lock, stock and barrel by a slow orthodox Bedi delivery that on view seemed perfect for a six. John Edrich, onedown batsman for England for a pretty long time, failed to complete the century, once, falling to a Bedi delivery which spun in viciously after pitching. It is on record that Bedi finished the career prematurely of some fine cricketers in the game. But the more he was ruthless on the field the more he was gentle and humane off the file. The honour of the country remained always dear to him, nothing could distract him from his goal. When the traditional test cricket faced danger from Australian T.V. tycoon Kerry Packer, Bedi defied the million dollar-offer and single-handedly held aloft the flag of Test cricket.

Bedi is and was a great crusader. Following principles of morality and merit, he dared defy the authority of all mortals. He vehemently attacked those he found stooping below the level of sportsmanship. He fought many a battle, no matter whether he won or lost. May 11 would go down in history as the Red Letter day for Asia as on this day, Bedi spoke from the United Nations Platform in New York against apartheid in sports practiced by South Africa. It was for the first time that an Indian was given the rare honour of addressing the United Nations. After he was introduced by the then Nigerian Chairman of the committee as 'one of the finest spin bowlers in the world', Bedi said:

Indian consider apartheid in sports practised by South Africa as a negation of the principles of human dignity.' I call upon all the sports organisations of the world to work united to end the practice. The only effective weapon in this direction is for the countries of the world to sever sporting contracts between their nationals and the nationals of south Africa. I am aware I have been chosen for the honour by the committee because of this citizenship of a country which has been in the vanguard of the international movement against the evil system of apartheid in South Africa for several decades. Today apartheid in South Africa has been abolished.

He has already been awarded the Arjuna and Padam Shri awards.

Bishan Singh Bedi was born at Amritsar, the Sikhs' spiritual capital, on September 25, 1946. He finished his schooling unnoticed. But his ability as a potential bowler came to view only after he joined Khalsa College, Amritsar. He showed sparks of brilliance while bowling slow left spinners. Convinced as the captain was of his class and calibre, Bedi was given long spells of bowling thus learning the tricks in the trade of spin bowling. Next year, he joined Hindu College, because the new institution afforded him a lot of opportunities to shape himself into a fine bowler. Rightly Bedi enhanced his reputation and rating on the cricket scene as he gradually rose from one step to another. From the college to the university team from Punjab to the North Zone side, Bedi advanced with effortless ease. The early encouragement, his success and total commitment to the cause of cricket paid rich dividends. Often in sweltering heat of the summer, the people saw a young man in turban bowling alone for hours at a stretch. Determination and devotion of this kind could not but yield results later.

Bedi after establishing his credentials well in the state and zone soon caught the eye of the national selectors who put him to severe test against a team led by an all-time great Garry St. A. Sobers of the West Indies. Thus in the second Test played from December 31, 1996, to January 5, 1967, at Calcutta, the people saw a lean figure sporting a bread and turban descending on the cricket field. Though India lost, Bedi won the hearts of both spectators and selectors. From the on started the success story of this fine spinner. As the years went by Bedi became an integral part of the team. His cricketing exploits are now almost legendary. He played against all cricket playing countries : England, Australia, the West Indies, New Zeeland and Pakistan. With 266 wickets in the bag, he was at one time the fifth biggest wicket-taker in the history of the world. At another time some strongly believed that had he not been sidelined unceremoniously by the Board of Control for Cricket in India, he would have gone on to become the top wicket-taker. He led India in 22 Tests in a row which in itself is a record for India as previously Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi held the distinction with 21 Tests. Bedi is also the only Indian bowler to claim over 1500 wickets in first-class cricket.

If Bedi's contribution to Indian cricket is great, to Delhi it is ever greater. Helping those with no godfathers is another of Bedi's pastime. He has helped many a budding player to hit the headlines. In Delhi, he harnessed cricket potential to a great extent, making it emerge as the premier side on the national cricket scene. Convince him of a good cause, whether in sports or in any other worthy field like collecting funds for the handicapped, well, Bedi will be in the forefront of all noble campaigns. And this is what has endeared Bedi to the public. Even after his retirement from the game, he remains the heart throb of the millions not only in India but the world over. Fully subscribing to the Sikh faith and ideology, Bedi remains a popular figure to the millions of Sikhs in India and abroad.

Bedi is employed in SAIL at Delhi.

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Herez something about Navjot Singh Sidhu...

Navjot Singh Sidhu is Punjab's answer to Tamil Nadh's K. Srikkanth, both India's dashing opening batsmen and both hard-hitters of the bal. Both cannot be tied down no matter of what country the pace attack they are facing, both like to leave the crease to lift the ball into the stands for glorious sixes, sometimes even on demand. In the sixties all round Salim Durrani delighted the crowds, spraying sixes on all sides. In the seventies and eighties both Srikkanth and Sidhu were the start performers on the Indian cricket scene. If Srikkanth was a folk hero in Tamil Nadu, Sidhu is a hero in Punjab.

Sidhu took to cricket because with his father, the late Bhagwant Singh Sidhu, the game was a passion. He wanted to see Sidhu as a top-class cricketer. So he took him everywhere, followed him like a shadow and ensured Sidhu had a cricket atmosphere around. From the beginning Sidhu showed great promise. As the years rolled by he polished his game further and removed whatever flaws he had in his technique.

Sidhu first represented the country in England with the under-19 Indian team led by Ravi Shastry. His performance was satisfactory. But Navjot Sidhu showed his real class during the West Indies tour of India. Playing for the North Zone Sidhu first cricket a century against the West Indies. Later he was included in the Board President's XI when he scored 70 odd runs. This ensured him a place in the Indian team. Thus Sidhu made his Test debut against the West Indies led by Clive Llyod in 1983. In the years that followed Sidhu had matured into a fine cricketer.

Navjot hit the maiden test century (116) against New Zeeland led by John Wright. In five Test innings Sidhu aggregated 198 at an average of 49.50. So he was able to establish himself as a successful Test cricketer from Punjab.

But in the three one-day internationals against New Zeeland Sidhu scored 25,67 and 14 which gave him an average of 35.53. In the 1987 Reliance Cup Sidhu had time and again hammered the opposition into submission. However, against the Kiwis he was less authoritative. At the Cuttack international where he hit 67 runs, he ducked awkwardly to give a rising catch to wicket-keeper Ian Smith. It had given rise to the view in certain quarters that Sidhu was vulnerable against rising deliveries. However, the opinion was not well founded going by his scores in the Reliance Cup. In what World Cup Sidhu hit 73 against Australia, 75 against New Zeeland, 51 against Australia again, 55 against Zimbabwe and 22 against England.

But lately Sidhu has been in and out of the Indian team. Initially he was not selected in the Indian team for the Australian tour in 1992 but was recalled mid-way through the tour. But Sidhu obviously did not succeed as much as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) wanted him to. Consequently, he was dropped from the Indian team for the World Cup. However, some strongly felt that he was unceremoniously axed.

However, Sidhu has still years of cricket in him. If he keeps away injuries and maintains his physical fitness, he will most naturally walk into the national team and don the India cap, rather turban in his case.

At present Navjot Sidhu is working as an officer with the State Bank of Patiala.

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even tho he aint on the list - my vote goes to Fauja Singh!... a 92 yr old sikh who runs the london marathon (26 miles) and many other long distance races to raise money for charity - last yr he made the world record for the fasted time in his age range .. and he beat his own personal best by over half an hour!

the charity he raises money for is BLISS... his money goes towards helpin pay for machines which keep premature babies alive.... :D

waheguru bless him :D


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Fauja Singh, The Marathon Runner, Age 92...

As 68,000 athletes prepare for next week's London Marathon, many will be spurred on by the question: 'Can I beat my personal best?' Fauja Singh, though, is asking himself a more ambitious question: 'Can I set another world record?'

You wouldn't take him for a world-beater, watching him shuffle through the streets of Ilford, east London, for his daily training. Nor would you suspect that he recently celebrated his 92nd birthday.

Fauja ran his first London marathon in 2000, aged 89. It took 6hr 54min 42sec, which, for a man who hadn't run for 53 years, wasn't bad. When he ran a near-identical 6hr 54min 55sec in 2001, he found he had knocked almost an hour off the world record for the over-90s. Last year he trimmed this to 6hr 45 min 31 sec. Next Sunday - the Sikh New Year - he's aiming for 6hr 40 min.

'I feel strong,' says Fauja with a toothy grin. 'But I've just had to go to India for two weeks, for a family party, so I've missed some training. And my diet has been disrupted, because everyone feels they have to give me some special food, as a mark of respect. I have so many relatives. It's very stressful.'

Last year, 407 runners took longer than Fauja to complete the London Marathon. Many were in their 30s. When Fauja was that young, he was running cross-country races in his native India. 'I was good. I didn't run for pleasure: I ran to win.' Then came Partition in 1947, and new priorities. He hung up his running shoes at 36. A lifetime later - with four children, 13 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren scattered across three continents - he found himself in Ilford, newly widowed and looking for a purpose. He began to punctuate his daily walks with bursts of jogging. His legs soon regained their lost strength. Then Fauja saw a television programme about the marathon - he knew what he had to do.

His family took it well. Neighbours introduced him to Harmander Singh, a local community worker and marathon enthusiast who became his trainer, and put him in touch with Bliss, the charity for premature births, for whom Fauja has raised thousands of pounds. 'I want to help those who are least able to help themselves,' says Fauja. 'I like the idea of the oldest running for the youngest.'

His training today involves several miles of road running, followed by a warm bath, a ginger curry and some relaxing meditation. It seems to do him good. Will he be disappointed if he doesn't set a new record? 'Oh yes,' he laughs. 'But I'm going to give it my best try.'

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Let us stick to the Topic otherwise Truthsingh ji is gonna do the justice :LOL:

Steel Bangale: the charity he raises money for is BLISS... his money goes towards helpin pay for machines which keep premature babies alive....

Steel that was a great addition... Fauja Singh ji is in our Hall of Fame... So is Ajit Pal Singh... I will tell about him shortly...


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Ajit Pal Singh in Hockey

Ajit Pal Singh was rightly acclaimed as "one of the best centre halfs in the worlds" during his time. He led India to a sensational victory in the third world Cup Hockey Tournament at Kaula Lumpur in 1975. But next year with practically the same team he saw India crashing to the seventh place in the Montreal Olympics Games.

Born on April 1, 1947, Ajit pal Singh learnt the alphabet of hockey in his native Sansarpur village, the bastion of hockey during that time. A number of players from this village had already represented India in the Olympics and a number of international tournaments.

He first played in an international hockey tournament at Bombay in 1960. Later he represented India in Japan in 1966. Having finished his studies at the school, Ajit Pal Singh joined Layalpur Khalsa College, Jalandhar, which had honour of a number of star hockey players. Ajit Pal Singh got the first real break when, as student of B.A. Part-I, he was selected in the Indian team to play in the Pre-Olympic Hockey Tournament at permanently on the rolls of Indian hockey team. Next year Ajit Pal Singh gave a dazzling show of stickwork in the Mexico Olympic Games. He showed what a fine sense of distribution he had and how he helped make the half-line function smoothly. Ajit pal Singh showed such dexterity and skill at his position that he was included in the World Hockey teams of 1971,72 and 73. He next represented India in the 1974 Asian Games at Teheran. Consequently he was included in the Asian All-Star Hockey XI the same year.

But he reached the pinnacle of glory in 1975 when he led India to the third World Cup victory in Kuala Lumpur in the most trying circumstances. The Punjab Government had borne all expenses prior to the participation by organising a camp for the team in Punjab. The whole country was in great jubilation. For the first time hockey seemed to get priority over cricket in the country.

Ajit Pal next toured New Zeeland. But in 1976 in the Montreal Olympics Games India suffered the most humiliating defeat under Ajit Pal Singh when they finished seventh. No one seemed ready for an answer what went wrong for, India had fielded practically the same team which had won the third World Cup title.

Fed up with the Indian show at Montreal and in view of the mounting criticism in the country, Ajit Pal Singh retired from the international hockey scene. However, he continued playing for the BSF where he was employed as Assistant Commandant. He was also not happy the way the Indian Hockey Federation managed its affairs treating the players shabbily off and on the field.

Four years later Ajit Pal Singh came out of retirement to play in the Champions Trophy Tournament at Karachi in 1980. That untimely became his last international appearance for India. Ajit Pal Singh was awarded the Arjuna Award in 1972.

Ajit Pal Singh shared one common trait with the late Surjit Singh. He always challenged the highhandedness of IHF bosses who showed scant respect for the boys who toiled in the field for the country's honour. He was very vocal in criticising the IHF working. But as a player, Ajit Pal Singh was very shrewd, a great schemer and played hockey in his mind. At present, he owns a Centre-Half filling station in Delhi.

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HALL OF FAME (Revised)

- FAUJA SINGH... The Marathon Runner... with a Mission Divine :arrow: ...Contribution by Steel Bangle

- MIKHA SINGH... "The Flying Sikh"... in Athletics

- AJIT PAL SINGH... in Hockey

- SURJIT SINGH... in Hockey

- BISHEN SINGH BEDI... in Cricket

- NAVJOT SINGH SIDHU... in Cricket

- HARBHAJAN SINGH... in Cricket

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the sad thing is that Steel Bangle was seen last fortnight talking to a horse about the world politics of today.... i think YOU should prove yourself by telling us your credentials

i aint even got nuttin to do with this... ehmy meri shel layi jandey aah :cry: :P

jsb if u been watchin CNN n readin the papers u wud have seen rupy in them

what about Tiger Singh that wrestler that used to be on WWF... he used to come on every sunday - get his ass kicked and go home :LOL::LOL:

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