Indian hockey hits new low

2012 was all about the London Olympics, but there were also other notable incidents that stood out in the year. Here's a look at the sportspersons and moments of the year that made headlines.



On 26 February 2012, the Indian men's national field hockey team qualified for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London after a gap of eight years. However, all pre-Olympics expectations were ruthlessly dashed as India set the dubious record of being the only team to lose all five pool matches by scoring six and conceding 18 goals.

India's group included Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Korea and New Zealand. The humiliation was completed when India was defeated 2-3 by South Africa in the 11-12 place classification match and finished last in a field of 12 competing teams. The previous lowest position that the country had occupied was eighth at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

It was in London that the Indian hockey team had clinched the 1948 Olympic gold medal in what was independent India's first major international sporting achievement, so it was ironic that the same city was the host when Indian hockey reached a new low.

Centre forward Shivendra Singh later blamed coach Michael Nobbs' wrong strategy of over-attacking for India's Olympic debacle. Nobbs, who still holds his job, had accused the Indian players of lacking commitment during the Olympics and had stated "there were some players in the team who are just happy to be Olympians".

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