India, once known for its hockey legends, had fallen out of favour in recent decades. However, emotions are running high as a result of Tokyo 2020’s resiliency. While the men’s team is no longer in contention for gold, they can still aim for bronze.
On Thursday, August 5, 2021, the Indian Men’s Hockey Team will face Germany in the Bronze Medal play-offs, looking to avenge their Semi-Final loss to Belgium. The Women’s Hockey Team, on the other hand, put up a spirited fight against Argentina Semi-Final. However, they were unable to maintain their lead and finally lost the match. On Friday, August 6, 2021, the Indian Women’s Hockey Team will compete for the bronze medal against Great Britain.
India’s History with Hockey
India’s men’s hockey team won six straight Olympic gold medals from 1928 to 1956. The Women’s Team made their debut at the Women’s Hockey World Cup in Mandelieu in 1974, when they finished fourth. Their best Olympic result occurred in the 1980 Moscow Summer Olympics, as they finished fourth in a women’s event for the first time in Olympic history.
Hockey became known as the country’s national sport during a winning streak in the 1940s and 1950s. It was only in 2012, after the government responded to a 10-year-old girl’s right to information request, that it was disclosed that India does not have a national sport.
The decline has been attributed to the substitution of artificial turfs for grass grounds in 1976. Others have blamed the poor performance on poor management and arrogance.
Regardless, India’s hockey teams have fought bravely this time. For the first time in Olympic history, the women’s team has advanced to the semi-finals.
Last Chance to Win a Medal
The Indian hockey team’s epic run has reached its conclusion. The women’s team will face Great Britain in the bronze medal match, while the men’s team will face Germany.
All Indian fans would be glued to their televisions, waiting to see what will happen. Which squad will bring home the bronze medal? Will both teams or perhaps a fresh girl’s story be recorded in Indian hockey’s history?
The women’s team will face a difficult task in facing the Great Britain team, as they have previously lost against them. If the men’s team defeats the Germans in the bronze medal match, it will be their first Olympic medal in hockey since the 1980 Moscow Games.
Until now, the Indian hockey team’s performance has been outstanding. At the ongoing 2020 Tokyo Olympics, it will be the last time we see the Indian hockey team in action. A greater win, aside from the medals, might rekindle India’s enthusiasm for the sport.