India clean sweeps FIH Hockey Stars Awards

06 Oct 2021: International Hockey Federation announced the award winners of the FIH Hockey Stars Awards 2020-21 today.

The voting-based annual awards are given in four categories viz. (Player of the Year, Goalkeeper of the Year, Rising Star of the Year and Coach of the Year) each for both the men and women.

Players and Coaches representing India were nominated in all eight categories (four each for men and women). In a first, all the nominees from won the prestigious awards in their respective categories.

List of Winners – Men

  • Player of the Year: Harmanpreet Singh
  • Goalkeeper of the Year: PR Sreejesh
  • Rising Star of the Year: Vivek Sagar Prasad
  • Coach of the Year: Graham Reid

List of Winners – Women

  • Player of the Year: Gurjit Kaur
  • Goalkeeper of the Year: Savita Punia
  • Rising Star of the Year: Sharmila Devi
  • Coach of the Year: Sjoerd Marijne

India’s dragflick sensation Harmanpreet Singh was crowned the ‘FIH Player of the Year’ in the men’s category. He was the top scorer in India’s Bronze medal-winning performance at the Tokyo Olympic Games. He was nominated for the award along with Belgium’s Arthur Van Doren and Alexander Hendrickx as well as Australia’s Jake Whetton, Tim Brand and Aran Zalewski.

Meanwhile, Indian Women’s Hockey team dragflicker Gurjit Kaur won the ‘FIH Player of The Year’ in the women’s category. She was nominated alongside Argentina’s Agustina Gorzelany and Agustina Albertarrio. The other nominees for this award also include Netherlands’ Eva De Goede, Frederique Matla and Maria Verschoor.

India’s famed goalkeeper PR Sreejesh won the ‘Goalkeeper of the Year’ in the men’s category. Sreejesh came up with a career-best performance at the Olympic Games 2020 and was the cynosure of Indian defence. The other nominees in this category were Belgium’s Vincent Vanasch and Australia’s Andrew Charter.

Indian Women team custodian Savita, on the other hand, won the ‘Goalkeeper of the Year’ in the women’s category. Savita, who was also the joint-Vice Captain for the Indian women’s hockey team at the Olympic Games 2020, was outstanding in guarding India’s post and played an instrumental role in the team finishing fourth in the Tokyo Olympic Games. The other nominees in this category were Great Britain’s Maddie Hinch and Argentina’s Belen Succi.

In the FIH Rising Star of the Year for men, Vivek Sagar Prasad won the award for the second consecutive time. He was nominated along with South Africa’s Mustaphaa Cassiem and Australia’s Sean Findlay. Sharmila Devi won the FIH Rising Star award – women with maximum votes ahead of Great Britain’s Fiona Crackles and Argentina’s Valentina Raposo.

Indian Men’s Hockey Chief Coach Graham Reid was awarded the FIH Coach of the Year. He was nominated along with Australia’s Colin Batch and Belgium’s Shane McLeod.

Former Indian Women’s Hockey Chief Coach Sjoerd Marijne too was awarded the ‘FIH Coach of the Year’ for women’s team category. He was nominated along with Great Britain’s Mark Hager and Netherlands’ Alyson Annan.

Hockey India President congratulate the winners

Hockey India President Gyanendro Ningombam congratulated the winners and said, “This is a great moment for Indian hockey as all our Indian nominees for the FIH Stars Awards have been announced winners.”

He further added, “After the historic performances in Tokyo by both Indian Men and Women’s Hockey teams, the support from Indian fans from across the globe has been overwhelming. This is a big moment for us and these awards will definitely inspire future generations to take up the sport professionally. On behalf of Hockey India, I congratulate all the award winners and wish them success in their future endeavours.”

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Pratik Asthana Founder Sports Team of India