“Coming from the King”: Indian hockey team captain Manpreet Singh thanks ‘Chak De’ coach Shah Rukh Khan after Olympic glory


Manpreet Singh, the captain of the Indian hockey team, on Thursday thanked Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan after leading his side to win an Olympic bronze medal for the first time in 41 years.

Reacting to the India side’s Olympic glory, Shah Rukh had tweeted, “Wow!! Indian Men’s Hockey Team Congratulations. Resilience and skill at its peak. What an exciting match.”

This elicited an instant response from Manpreet, who wrote, “Coming from the King – thank you so much sir for all your motivation, inspiring words and never ending support towards the team.”

Shah Rukh played the character of the coach for the Indian women’s hockey team in Bollywood blockbuster Chak De India in 2007. The popularity of the film had a considerable impact in popularising women’s hockey in India. Shah Rukh’s character Kabir Khan was widely praised across the world.

India were trailing Germany 1-3 on Thursday before they staged an extraordinary comeback to beat the Germans 5-4. The last time the Indian team had won an Olympic medal in hockey was in 1980 when they won Gold. However, for many, the Bronze in Tokyo assumes bigger significance given that the Moscow Olympics in 1980 was boycotted by many countries and only five teams could take part in the competition.