Olympic athlete and national football coach Syed Shahid Jakim has died-Sports News, Firstpost

He was an international referee with a FIFA badge having officiated in Asian Club Cup matches and also received the prestigious Dhyan Chand Award.

File image of Syed Shahid Hakim. Twitter / @ IndianFootball

New Delhi: Syed Shahid Jakim, former Indian footballer and member of the last national team to play in the Olympic Games in Rome in 1960, died in a hospital in Gulbarga on Sunday, family sources said.

Hakim ‘saab’ as he was popularly called, was 82 years old at the time of his death. He had very recently suffered a stroke as a result of which he was admitted to a hospital in Gulbarga.

During his more than five-decade association with Indian football, Dronacharya Award winner Hakim was also assistant coach of the late PK Banerjee at the 1982 Asian Games in Delhi and was also in charge of the national team. independently during a tournament in Merdeka.

Domestically, his best moment as a coach came when he guided Mahindra & Mahindra (now Mahindra United) to the Durand Cup title in 1988, beating a formidable East Bengal side. He has also coached Salgaocar and his last serious coaching assignment was with Bengal Mumbai FC in 2004-05.

He was an international referee with a FIFA badge having officiated in Asian Club Cup matches and also received the prestigious Dhyan Chand Award.

A former squadron leader of the Indian Air Force, Hakim was also regional director of the Sports Authority of India and his last assignment was as project director in charge of scouting ahead of the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup.

Back when he was a player he was a central midfielder but still regretted the fact that he didn’t have any playing time during the Rome Olympics in 1960, where the team’s coach was moreover his own father, the great Syed Abdul Rahim.

It is believed that Hakim was a bit unlucky not being able to play any matches in Rome, then missed the selection when Indian football had its best hours at the 1962 Asian Games, winning the gold medal.

According to the elders, Hakim was a decent “half-back” but not in the league of a Ram Bahadur, Mariappa Kempaiah, Prashanta Sinha or Franco, who at that time were better players than him.

In the late 1950s and mid-1960s Indian soccer teams played in a “two-half system” and as a result the four mentioned above always outperformed it in larger tournaments.

Legend has it that before India’s last league game against Peru, team top footballer Chunni Goswami asked Rahim saab to consider Hakim when India had already lost to Hungary and France .

Apparently, Chuni had said that since Ram Bahadur had a day off against France, why doesn’t the coach give Hakim a chance, which the player’s father politely refused.

However, Hakim has remained a respected figure in Indian football for the number of hats he has donned over the years.


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