In Pictures: Indian hockey's 1980 Olympic gold journey

In Pictures: Indian hockey's 1980 Olympic gold journey

On July 07, 1980 the Indian men's hockey team, led by V. Baskaran (fifth from left), boarded the flight to Moscow in Soviet Union for the Olympic games in search of a gold medal that had eluded the former champion since 1964. Due to the boycott by USA and its allies, field hockey comprised six teams who would face each other for a place in the final. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: the hindu archives
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India's first match was against minnows Tanzania and the side cruised to a thumping 18-0 triumph. Surinder Singh Sodhi (Left) scored five goals while Baskaran and Davinder Singh scored four goals apiece. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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In its second match, India came up against a tricky Poland team which defended resolutely and had lightning-fast counterattacks. It took a goal from Mervyn Fernandez (Centre) in the penultimate minute to earn India a 2-2 draw. Another 2-2 draw against Spain in the third match complicated India's chances of reaching the final. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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Needing two victories from the last two group games, India thrashed Cuba 13-0 with Surinder Singh Sodhi (not in picture) scoring four goals. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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India faced Soviet Union in a virtual semifinal as Spain had already qualified for the final. India went ahead through Davinder Singh and Surinder Singh Sodhi's first half goals. Mohamed Shahid and M.K. Kaushik added two more as India confirmed a final berth with a 4-2 win over the host. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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The Moscow Games was the inaugural edition for women's field hockey at the Olympics. Indian women, led by Rupa Saina, finished fourth after losing the bronze medal match to Soviet Union. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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With the Indian men taking on Spain for a shot at gold, M.K. Kaushik (42') made it 3-0 for the side, but Spain made a fine comeback with through a flurry of penalty corners. Spanish star Amat (53', 54') scored two in succession, while Mohamed Shahid restored India's lead at 4-2. The Indians endured several nervous minutes at the end as Amat made it 4-3 in the 65th minute and Spain won five corners in succession. But the Indians managed to hold on and wild celebrations ensued as the final whistle went off. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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India had finally ended the long wait for a eighth gold and as captain Baskaran told Sportstar: "I have never gone through such an excruciating experience before. I have preserved the broken stick from the final as a reminder of those nail-biting moments that preceded the golden hour." The players received a grand welcome when they arrived in New Delhi. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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The then Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi congratulated the team for its victorious campaign. (THE HINDU ARCHIVES) Photo: (THE HINDU ARCHIVES)
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