True giant and a half in his field: Ravi Shastri, Harbhajan pay tribute to hockey great Balbir Singh Sr

Indian cricket team head coach Ravi Shastri and veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh paid tribute to hockey legend Balbir Singh Senior, a three-time Olympics gold medallist, who passed away at the age of 95, on Monday

One of India’s greatest hockey players, Balbir Singh Sr, died at a hospital Monday morning after battling multiple health issues for over two weeks.

Ravi Shastri tweeted out in the memory of Balbir Singh Sr and said the Indian hockey great was equivalent to a half in his field.

“#BalBirSingh ji- A True Giant and a half in his field. Hockey legend out and out. Condolences,” Ravi Shastri wrote on Twitter.

Condoling the demise of the hockey legend, out of favour India cricketer Harbhajan Singh wrote, “When you look back at his achievements, you just remain awestruck.”

Former Indian cricketer Bishan Singh Bedi and former India skipper Anil Kumble also offered his tribute to Balbir Singh Senior.

Balbir Singh Sr is survived by his daughter Sushbir and three sons Kanwalbir, Karanbir, and Gurbir.

His maternal grandson Kabir later sent out a message stating, “Nanaji passed away this morning.”

The three-time Olympic gold medallist was in a semi-comatose state since May 18 and had developed a blood clot in his brain after being first admitted to the hospital for bronchial pneumonia with high fever.

He was hospitalised after experiencing high fever and suffered three cardiac arrests during the course of his treatment.

One of the country’s most accomplished athletes, the iconic centre-forward was the only Indian among 16 legends chosen by the International Olympic Committee across modern Olympic history.

His world record for most goals scored by an individual in the men’s hockey final of the Olympics still remains unbeaten.

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