Huge honour to have been nominated for the Arjuna Award 2019, says Indian Men's Hockey Team Midfielder Chinglensana Singh Kangujam
New Delhi, 27 August 2019: Indian Men's Hockey Team's experienced Midfielder Chinglensana Singh Kangujam was recently nominated for the prestigious Arjuna Award 2019 by the Selection Committee for National Sports Awards 2019. The National Sports Awards 2019 are set to take place on the occasion on the National Sports Day, on Thursday, 29th August 2019, in New Delhi, and the 27-year-old Midfielder, who is among the 19 sportspersons getting the Arjuna Award, says that it is a huge honour for him to have been nominated for India's second-highest civilian award for a sportsperson.
"It is a huge honour for me to have been nominated for the Arjuna Award 2019. I have always taken so much pride in representing the country, and having completed more than 200 International Caps for India, this award motivates me even further to keep giving my all for the nation in the upcoming tournaments. I am grateful to everyone who has played a part in my journey so far as a hockey player. My family, friends,administrators, support staff, coaches and my teammates have always backed me, and it makes me proud that the Government of India has also recognized me for my game," said an elated Chinglensana.
The talented Midfielder, who made his International debut for the Senior team in 2011 when he represented the country at the Champions Challenge in South Africa, is one of the few players in the current Indian team to have completed more than 200 International Caps. The 27-year-old hails from Manipur and is known for his composure and authority in India’s midfield. After making his debut for the National team in 2011, the Midfielder won his first medal with the Senior team at the 2013 Men’s Asia Cup where the Indian team won the Silver Medal. He was also a member of the team which won the Silver Medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games held in Glasgow. Whereas, his first Gold Medal with the Indian team came in the same year at the Asian Games 2014 when the team beat Pakistan 4-2 in Penalty Shootout in the Final after the scores were tied at 1-1 after the regulation time.
"It has been a long journey for me since making my debut in 2011. Indian hockey has evolved in the eight years I have been with the National team, and I feel that our domestic structure has also helped in making sure that we have a huge pool of players who can step up and play at the international level. It was the same for me when I came into the side in 2011, and it was a tough task at first as we played some outstanding teams over the years, but winning medals at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games was something that really made me feel like I belong here, and also made me realize how truly blessed I am to be playing for India," said the 27-year-old.
Chinglensana's ability to intercept and to transform defense into attacks within seconds during turnovers is one of the key aspects of his game. The 27-year-old has been an integral part of the Indian team in the past few years, which has also seen him shoulder the duties of being the Vice Captain of the team. The Manipur-born Midfielder played a crucial role in India winning the Gold Medal at the Hero Asia Cup 2017, and then the Bronze Medal at the Odisha Men’s Hockey World League Final Bhubaneswar 2017. He was also a part of the team which took part at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, and the Silver Medal-winning team of the FIH Men’s Champions Trophy 2018. He won the Bronze Medal at the 18th Asian Games 2018 and the Gold Medal at the 5th Men's Asian Champions Trophy 2018, along with being a part of the team which made it to the Quarter-Finals of the Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018.
“We have had some amazing success in the past few years with the Indian team, and some defeats have also been hard to take in the Finals, but I feel it has all been a part of helping us raise our game throughout. To lift the Asia Cup in 2017, and then the Asian Champions Trophy in 2018 was something that was unbelievable and I am really happy that I could help the team in the cause. We did find it hard at times, especially when we narrowly lost in the Quarter-Finals of the Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018 at home, but it has only motivated us to come back stronger and work harder to bring many more laurels to the country," said the commanding Midfielder.