Hockey Awards: Assunta Lakda Award to Jharkhand’s Salima Tete, Hardik-Savita became the best hockey player of the year
Hockey Awards 2021-22: India midfielder Hardik Singh And goalkeeper savita Punia was on Friday adjudged the men’s and women’s hockey player of the year at a glittering ceremony in New Delhi. The 24-year-old Hardik beat veteran Manpreet Singh and Harmanpreet Singh to win his fifth Balbir Singh Senior Player of the Year award.
Hardik had performed brilliantly in the FIH World Cup held in Odisha in January this year but could not play further in the tournament due to a hamstring injury. He scored in the first match in a 2–0 win over Spain. India was eliminated from the tournament after losing to Spain in the pre-quarterfinals.
Under Savita’s captaincy, India won the FIH Women’s Nations Cup in December and made it to the Women’s Pro League. Hardik Singh and Savita Poonia were given Rs 25 lakh each and a trophy. The total prize money of the awards was more than two crore 70 lakh rupees.
Hardik said, ‘This year has been wonderful. It is pleasant to see our efforts being recognized like this. At the same time, Savita said, ‘I have no words. We performed brilliantly as a team. Winning the first FIH Nations Cup was special for all of us. Hockey India also gave the awards for 2021, as the ceremony could not be held due to the Corona pandemic.
At the same time, Salima Tete of Jharkhand was selected as the best player in this annual award ceremony. For this, Salima was awarded the ‘Asunta Lakda Award for Upcoming Player of the Year Women Under-21’. For this, Salima was handed over a cash prize of Rs 10 lakh as well as a trophy.
Salima Tete, a resident of Simdega district, is the second female hockey player from Jharkhand to play in the Olympics. Asunta Lakda is also a resident of Simdega district. Various sports associations along with all the office bearers of Hockey Jharkhand congratulated Salima on this achievement. Hockey India started the annual awards five years ago.
At the same time, Gurbaksh Singh, who won gold in the 1964 Olympics, was awarded the Major Dhyanchand Lifetime Achievement Award. Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Anurag Thakur, Hockey India President Dilip Tirkey and Hockey Jharkhand President Bholanath Singh were present at the award ceremony.