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President Kovind, Bhutia, Chhetri mourn footballer Chuni Goswami's demise

AIFF President Praful Patel expressed grief over the demise of Goswami and said that the Goswami's 'contribution to Indian Football will never be forgotten'

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Sunil Chhetri | football | Bhaichung Bhutia

BS Web Team & agencies  |  New Delhi 

President Kovind, Bhutia, Chhetri among others mourn Chuni Goswami's demise
The former Indian skipper, who was popularly known as 'Chuni' Goswami, died on Thursday due to cardiac arrest at the age of 82 in Kolkata, West Bengal. File photo: PTI

Former skipper and current Blue Tigers captain mourned the demise of the legendary footballer Subimal Goswami.
 
The former Indian skipper, who was popularly known as 'Chuni' Goswami, died on Thursday due to cardiac arrest at the age of 82 in Kolkata, West Bengal.
 
Taking to Twitter Bhutia wrote, "Rest in peace Chuni da."  

 
Chhetri reflected on Goswami's versatility as he played two sports --cricket and
 
"We've lost one of the leading lights of Indian sport today. Not too many can boast of being top-notch in two different sports. You played your part to the fullest, rest well, Chuni sir. Strength to the family," Chhetri tweeted. 

 President also mourned the demise of India’s legendary footballer.
 
“Sad to hear about the passing of Chuni Goswami. In his demise India’s fans have lost a legend. A versatile sportsman, he was a star in his own right. My heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and admirers,” he tweeted. 

 
The All India Football Federation (AIFF) also condoled the demise of former captain Subimal Goswami, who died on Thursday at the age of 82.


AIFF President expressed grief over the demise of Goswami and saidf that the latter's "contribution to Indian Football will never be forgotten".
 
"It's sad to hear that Chuni-da, one of India's greatest footballers, is no more. His contribution to Indian Football will never be forgotten. I share the grief," AIFF's official website quoted Patel as saying.
 
"He will stay synonymous with the golden generation of Indian football. Chuni-da, you will remain alive in our hearts," he added.
 

On the other hand, General Secretary of AIFF Kushal Das said it is a huge loss not only for Indian football but for sports in India overall.
 
"Chuni Goswami will be alive in his achievements. He was a legendary footballer and someone who has been an inspiration to so many generations. May his soul Rest in Peace," Das said.
 
"Indian Football will always remember him as the captain of the 1962 Asian Games gold medal-winning squad. He was a versatile sportsman, having also represented Bengal in the Ranji Trophy. It's a huge loss not just for Indian Football, but sports in India overall," he added. 

Goswami's biggest achievement was captaining India to the 1962 Asian Games Gold medal when India secured a historic 2-1 victory against South Korea (Korea Republic) in the final to land India its second gold medal in Asian Games history.

 
After making his debut in 1958, Goswami represented India in 36 official International matches, captaining in 16 of them, and netting 13 goals.
 
Goswami won the Arjuna Award in 1963 and was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri Award in 1983. 

At the domestic level, Goswami was part of the Bengal's triumphant Santosh Trophy squad thrice - in 1955, 1958, and in 1959. Whereas, at the club level, he represented Mohun Bagan for 15 consecutive years - from 1954 to 1968.

Over the years, he helped Bagan win the Calcutta Football League nine times, the IFA Shield and the Durand Cup five times each, the Rovers Cup thrice, the Dr. HK Mookerjee Shield five times, Babu Kuer Singh Shield thrice, and the Ananda Bazar Centenary Trophy once. He won 14 trophies for Mohun Bagan as captain.
 

Goswami not only shined in the sport of football but also in cricket. He represented Bengal in the Ranji Trophy and even captained Bengal in the 1968-69 season.
 
During his first-class career as a cricketer, he played 46 matches amassing 1,592 runs, including a century.

 

In 2005, he was awarded the Mohun Bagan Ratna and was bestowed the Banga Bibhusan in 2013. The Indian postal department also honoured Goswami with a commemorative stamp on his 82nd birthday earlier this year.

 
He suffered cardiac arrest thrice in 14 minutes: Goswami's son
 
Subimal "Chuni" Goswami came for a routine check-up to a city hospital on Thursday morning and by evening he had suffered three cardiac arrests in 14 minutes to breathe his last and end an era, his son said.
 
"He had breakfast. Then we got him to the hospital. He was brought here for a routine check-up. He had lunch and even took a nap in the afternoon. But around 5 pm, he suffered three heart attacks in 14 minutes," said a crestfallen Sudipto.
 
Goswami, who died at the age of 82, is survived by his wife and Sudipto.
 
Goswami was also battling underlying ailments, including sugar, and prostrate and nerve problems.
 
Goswami had to be given insulin daily and due to the Covid-19 lockdown, his medical supervisor was not able to attend to him on a regular basis.
 
"I don't have words at this point, feeling lonely," said Sudipto. 

Besides two editions of the Asian Games, Goswami was also part of India's Olympic squad in the Rome Olympics in 1960. He also captained India in the final of the AFC Asian Cup in Tel Aviv in 1964 and was part of India's campaign in the pre-Olympic qualification in 1959 (in Kabul), 1960 (in Kolkata and Jakarta), 1963 (in Colombo as captain), and in 1964 in (Tehran and Calcutta).

 The Indian postal department also honoured Goswami with a commemorative stamp on his 82nd birthday earlier this year.

First Published: Fri, May 01 2020. 12:40 IST