Olympian and FIFA referee Syed Shahid Hakim passes away

Hakim had represented India in the 1960 Olympics and is the son of the legendary football coach S.A. Rahim.

File image of Syed Shahid Hakim.   -  V. V. SUBRAHMANYAM

Former Olympic footballer and ex-national football coach Syed Shahid Hakim passed away in a private hospital in Gulbarga on Sunday morning. He was 82 and survived by his wife and two daughters.

“He suffered a cardiac arrest at 8 am today and passed away at 8.30 am. He has been getting treatment after he was admitted to the hospital two days ago following the first stroke,” Sadia Syeda, wife of Hakim, informed Sportstar from Gulbarga.

Hakim, son of the legendary football coach S.A. Rahim, was part of the Indian squad for the 1960 Rome Olympics.

The former SAI national coach successfully battled COVID-19 last year in a private hospital in Hyderabad.

Only last week, he was among the many former internationals who were felicitated in Hyderabad. 

A vocal critic, Hakim was known for his frank views on contemporary topics in Indian football.

“I was not in the starting XI. The team was packed with heavyweights; only in case of an injury to some of the big names, players like me had a chance in the Rome Olympics,” said Hakim in a recent interview to Sportstar, recapping those experiences. 

Hakim became only the second footballer to win the prestigious Dhyan Chand Award for Life Time Achievement in Sports and Games in 2017 and served as the Chief Project Director at Sports Authority of India (SAI).

Hakim, besides playing for nearly 25 years, was also a qualified FIFA referee. He officiated in 33 international games, including the 1988 AFC Asian Cup in Qatar.

At the domestic level, he was part of the triumphant Services’ Santosh Trophy squad in 1960. He was also part of the squad from 1960-66. At the club level, he played for City College Old Boys (Hyderabad) and Indian Air Force.

A former assistant coach of the Indian National team, he also coached Mahindra and Mahindra in 1998-99 and guided it to victory in the Durand Cup in 1998. He also coached Salgaocar SC, Hindustan FC, and Bengal Mumbai Club.

Former India captains Victor Amalraj, Shabbir Ali, Telangana Football Association secretary G.P. Palguna were among those who expressed condolences to the family members.

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