Former India Captain, Coach and Technical Director Pradip Kumar Banerjee, who was known better as PK Banerjee, died at a private hospital in Kolkata after a prolonged illness on Friday. He was 83.

Banerjee was an integral part of India’s gold medal-winning team in the 1962 Asian Games and even scored in the final against South Korea as India fought against all odds to script a historic 2-1 triumph in Jakarta.

He represented India in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics and played a pivotal role in the 4-2 victory against Australia in the quarter-finals where India eventually finish fourth. Furthermore, he captained the national team in the 1960 Rome Olympics and scored the equaliser against France to help India register a 1-1 draw.

He represented India in 36 official matches, wearing the captain’s armband in six of them. In the process, he scored 19 official goals for the country.

He was also the first Indian Footballer to receive the Arjuna Award (in 1961), and was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri Award in 1990. Banerjee was also bestowed with the Fifa Fairplay Award (in 1990), and the Fifa Centennial Order of Merit in 2004.

(Inputs from AIFF)

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