Indian Hockey Team's 'Sardar'
Sardar Singh might not be the captain of the Indian hockey team anymore but he could still have a big role to play if India are to win their first Olympic medal in Men's field hockey since 1980
Full Name: Sardara Singh
Born: July 15, 1986
Height: 1.76 m
Event: Men's Hockey
About Sardar Singh
In 2008, Sardar Singh became the youngest man ever to captain the Indian National Men's hockey Team. Eight years later, the 29 year old has firmly established himself as one of the pillars of the team, despite not being named captain for the Rio Olympics.
Playing in the centre-half position, Sardar is the team's biggest play-maker. And one who is immensely respected by the team. He is also, hands down one of the fittest Indian athletes around. Interestingly, he also has quite a subtle sense of humour.
After the 2014 Asian Games gold medal winning performance, Sardar had told NDTV, "When I see a man with a paunch, I feel scared that I will become like that in the future. I feel hockey has kept me in shape, so I need to keep playing the game. For that I have to keep myself fit and keep working hard."
What made Sardar a successful captain was his man management skills. Something that he seems to be quite adept at. But was the team scared of him?
Sardar told NDTV, "No one is scared of anyone these days. Some players, you can be gentle with the, others you need to be strict with. Later you can say sorry. Depends on what is required and what the player is like. I change my style of communication accordingly."
Sardar's list of achievements is a long one. He was adjudged the Player of the Tournament in the 2010 Sultan Azlan Shah tournament where India won the gold. He has two Commonwealth Games silver medals. An Asian Games bronze medal. And the biggest feather in his cap, the 2014 Asian Games gold medal. In 2010, Sardar was also included in the FIH's all star team.
It wasn't a surprise then that he was the highest-paid marquee player at the inaugural Hockey India League auctions. The Delhi franchise bought him for Rs 42.49 lakh. He finished with the Player of the Tournament award
The Padma Shri recipient, who is also an officer with the Haryana Police has made 119 appearances for the senior Men's National team and scored 13 goals. His next target of course is a medal at the Rio Olympics.