Hockey in the Modern Era

Hockey in the Modern Era: Hockey is the national sport of India. The Indian national field hockey team has a rich history and is considered one of the strongest teams in the world. It is one of the most popular Olympic sports. After gaining popularity and winning some international tournaments, there was a slight decline of the game.

Because of the performances in the international games, it started obtaining the same popularity and recognition in the present day. Governments and certain non-profit organisations stepped up to assist teams with sporting equipment, instructors, fields, training facilities, and luring other businesses to invest so that they could start generating capital and get back on their feet.

Hockey India plans, directs and conducts all the activities for both men’s and women’s hockey in India.

It is recognized by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Govt. of India, as the sole body responsible for promoting hockey in India. It was formed after the Indian Hockey Federation was dismissed in 2008 by the IOA (Indian Olympic Association).

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Hockey in the modern Era: Hockey in India

The reason is just not the fall in the standards but conversion of hockey into the power game by the Europeans. The non-availability of artificial turfs, minimal coverage of hockey by the media, weak infrastructure, and a lack of commitment are the major causes of the pathetic situation of Indian hockey. The coaches in the academies seem to still adopt non-modern methods of training, which affect the player’s game instead of improving it to match the world’s standards.

Nothing concrete has been done in the last few decades, as a result of which Indian hockey has not achieved anything remarkable. The Ministry of Sports needs to intervene and work towards popularizing and raising the quality of the game, coupled with improving the present infrastructure.


The history of field hockey in India can be traced back to the 19th century, when British soldiers and officials introduced the sport to the country. It quickly became popular among Indian soldiers and civilians alike, and India’s national field hockey team was formed in 1928.

In the early years, the Indian hockey team was primarily composed of British Indians and Indian soldiers, and they competed in various tournaments and matches organized by the British army. The team’s first major international tournament was the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics, where they won their first Olympic gold medal in field hockey. India continued to dominate the sport internationally in the following decades, winning Olympic gold medals in 1932 and 1936, and their first field hockey World Cup in 1975. India also won the gold medal at the Asian Games six times between 1958 and 1970.

In the 1970s, India’s dominance in the sport began to decline, and the team struggled to achieve success at the international level. However, the team made a comeback in the 1980s and 1990s, winning the Asian Games gold medal in 1982 and the Champions Trophy in 1985. In recent years, India’s national field hockey team has shown improvement and achieved promising results in various tournaments like the 2018 Hockey World Cup and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. However, the team still faces challenges in terms of funding, infrastructure, and player development.

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Hockey in the modern Era: Dhyan Chand (standing second from left) with the Indian hockey team at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.


  • India’s national field hockey team has won 8 Olympic gold medals, 1 Olympic silver medal, and 2 Olympic bronze medals. The team has also won 1 World Cup title, in 1975.
  • India has been the most successful team in the history of the Asian Games, having won 11 gold medals, 1 silver, and 2 bronze.
  • In the past, the Indian Hockey team has been known for its high standard of stick work and ball control, which has earned them the nickname “Magicians of Hockey”.
  • In the 1960 and 1970s, the Indian Hockey team was dominant in the world with players like Dhanraj Pillay, Balbir Singh Sr., Leslie Claudius, Udham Singh, and many more.
  • India has won the Gold Medal in the Asian Games for a record 13 times and has also won the Asian Cup twice.
  • In the early 2000s, the Indian hockey team faced a decline in performance but in recent years it has shown improvement and promising results in various tournaments. India has also won the Commonwealth Games gold medal in field hockey twice, in 2002 and 2010.
  • Indian hockey player Dhyan Chand, widely considered to be one of the greatest field hockey players of all time, won three Olympic gold medals with the national team (1928, 1932, and 1936).
  • India has also produced several other notable hockey players, including Balbir Singh Sr., who won three Olympic gold medals and is considered one of the greatest centers in the history of the sport.
  • The Indian hockey team was the first non-European team to be a part of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) in 1926 Indian women’s hockey team has also made their mark in the international arena, they have won the Asian Games gold medal twice and the Asian Champions Trophy four times.


Hockey India has also made significant investments in grassroots development programs to promote the sport in the country. The organization has introduced several initiatives to increase the participation of young players and provide them with the necessary training and resources to excel at the international level. In conclusion, Indian hockey has seen a resurgence in recent years, with the national team achieving significant success in major international tournaments. With the continued support of Hockey India and investments in grassroots development programs, the future looks bright for Indian hockey.


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