Ludhiana: Carrying the good wishes of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and scores of hockey lovers, minister of state for sports Vijay Goel on Thursday spent a few moments with injured hockey star Jugraj Singh and found him in “good spirits”.
Jugraj was injured in a serious car accident on Tuesday night and was operated upon.
A report from New Delhi adds that even President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam took time off from his busy schedule during his visit to Ludhiana to ring Jugraj and enquire about his well-being, wishing him a speedy recovery.
As the country reacted with shock, Indian hockey captain Dhanraj Pillay said in Delhi the national side will sorely miss the services of Jugraj.
“No one can take his place in the side. His contribution in the resurgence of the team in the last one and-a-half years was immense. It is a big setback to the team, since he was the livewire,” Pillay said.
“Dhanraj Bhai, I can’t play against Pakistan (in the ensuing Asia Cup). You have to win against them and win the tournament,” Jugraj told Pillay when the latter visited him at the hospital. “We will try to win the Asia Cup for Jugraj,” Pillay said. Goel again assured Jugraj of full government support. He had announced on Wednesday that the sports ministry would foot Jugraj’s medical expenses.
Gagan Ajit Singh said: “He is the only four-in-one player in the side. He is good at not only taking penalty corners but is also the main defence against them.”
He was in favour of sending Jugraj abroad for further treatment. (PTI)