Book on India`s Olympic journey hits stands

New Delhi: With less than 50 days to go for the London Olympics, the sports buffs who are interested in knowing about India`s journey in the quadrennial extravaganza will get a chance to have their date with history.

The book titled `Olympics: India Story` co-authored by sports historian Boria Majumdar and Nalin Mehta and published by Harper Collins in 2008 has been revised and the second edition has hit the stands.

It is a more exhaustive coverage of India`s Olympic journey along with a lot of history associated with the participation of the contingent over the years.

The book also contains a special section which has names of all the Indian athletes who have represented the country till the 2008 Beijing Asian Games.

Among the 12 chapters, the most interesting is certainly the Berlin Olympics, 1936 --- where legendary Dhyan Chand singlehandedly brought gold for the country.

Stories like how Indian players practised on the deck of the ship and how contributions of Rs 5000 from the Nizam of Hyderabad and 200 GBP from Gaekwads of Baroda ensured that the team went for the Olympics.

There are stories about how erstwhile England captain Douglas Jardine who was aware about the Indian team`s stupendous performance in Berlin stopped his car to pose for a photograph with Dhyan Chand and Roop Singh.

While the stories on the golden era of Indian hockey can fascinate readers, the book also speaks about how Olympic sports gradually lost out to Cricket, TV and globalisation till Beijing happened.

It speaks about the hardships of Vijender Singh and Sushil Kumar who made the country proud in Beijing not to forget Abhinav Bindra whom the authors have termed as a product despite the system.

PTI

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