Where I Live
A-Z Index
BBC Sport Academy
BBC Sport You are in: Hockey: Features  

Give It A Go

Latest Sports News
Academy Parent

Get the newsletter
Discover hockey's answer to Pele
Around the Academy:

India has produced plenty of hockey legends over the years

Imagine a hockey player with such skill awestruck spectators thought he was a magician!

Well, that was the case with Indian legend Dhyan Chand, who wowed the world with his wonderful hockey wizardry.

He was the Pele of his age, hockey's equivalent of Muhammad Ali.

Quite simply, the best in the business.

Read on to find out more about the best hockey player the world has ever seen.

So, who was Dhyan Chand?

He was a hockey genius and an all-time sporting great.

Did he really have magical powers?

His nickname was the hockey wizard, but there was no abracadabra about it! Just pure skill and talent.

Still, some people were convinced he must be cheating because they had never seen such amazing stickwork.

They even reckoned he had a magnet in the hook of his stick to attract the ball.

Of course, it wasn't true.

Even when he played with a walking stick, Chand could find the back of the net.

Wow, he must have been really good!

The best.

He scored over 1,000 goals in a career spanning 22 years from 1926-1948.

During that time he won three Olympic gold medals.

What set him apart then?

Over 50 years on, and few players have ever lived up to the legend of Dhyan Chand.

He had brilliant ball control and would often weave the length of the pitch to score, leaving defenders trailing in his wake.

But that's not all. As well as being a prolific goalscorer, Chand also had excellent timing and awareness.

He always knew where his team-mates were and the right time to pass to them.

And he knew you didn't always have to smash the ball to score. He could find the back of the net just as easily by clever placing and pushing of the ball.

Back to top

The hockey wizard
His amazing feats

Dhyan's facts
Name: Dhyan Chand
Born: 29 August 1905, Allahabad
Position: Centre forward
Career highlights: Olympic gold - Amsterdam (1928), Los Angeles (1932); Berlin (1936)
International debut: 1926
Retired: 1948
Died: 3 December 1979

Did you know?
National Sports Day in India is celebrated each year on Dhyan Chand's birthday - 29 August
The people of Vienna paid tribute to Chand by erecting a statue of him. The statue has four hands and four sticks to signify his awesome ball control
Chand's son Ashok Kumar was capped for India during the 1970s

:: Indian Hockey Federation

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

^^ Back to top
© BBC Contact us | Help | About us Disclaimer
Football  |  Cricket  |  Tennis  |  Golf  |  Rugby Union  |  Rugby League  |  Athletics  |  Basketball  |  Swimming
Other Sport  |  In the Gym  |  Healthy Eating  |  Treatment Room  |  Your Blueprint  |  Learning Centre