New Delhi: Two-time Olympic medallist Former India hockey player Raghbir Singh Bhola has passed away at the age of 92. Bhola represented India in the 1956 Melbourne and 1960 Rome Olympics, winning a gold and silver medals respectively for the country.
Bhola served various roles such as member of the IHF selection committee, FIH international umpire, manager of the Indian hockey team, TV commentator and government observer at the Olympic Games
Bhola has successfully captained the Indian Air Force hockey and Services team from 1954-60 and won the Inter Services Hockey Championship three times and the National Hockey Championship on two occasions.
Raghbir Singh Bhola was born to a middle-class family in Multan (now Pakistan) on Aug 21st 1927. Raghbir developed an aptitude for sports at an early age. The standard for sports in his school was high and he only got an opportunity to play Field Hockey early when the senior players did not attend the games. His interest in sports was furthered by Dr. Khuda Baksh Awan, a civil surgeon at Khanewal who encouraged him to play with his children.
He was honoured with the Arjuna Award for his achievements in hockey in 2000. Bhola is survived by his wife Kamla Bhola, three daughters and three grandsons.