Ranchi: 1980 is a date etched in Olympian Sylvanus Dungdung's heart, for he was the proud member of the Moscow gold medal winning Indian hockey team, the last one to win the yellow metal in Olympics.

"I will never forget this date. I hold the gold medal and visualized the game which we had won against Spain. Exactly 32 years completed on Sunday. There are goose bumps," Dungdung said stretching his arms.

The right fullback, who played under V Baskaran's leadership then, stood like a rock along with others when Spain's rampaging Juan Amat had lurked the defence line in the last ten minutes as he almost pulled off parity.

"But our captain Baskaran advised us to give it all for your nation's pride, and don't allow the Spaniards to restore parity when India was precariously defending the 4-3 score in the final minutes," said Dungdung recalling the sensational final that gave India (its eighth) gold after a drought of 16 years.

Dungdung said the huge margins against Tanzania (18-0) and Cuba (13-0) in the preliminary round worked as a booster when India started the final against Spain at Dynamo Stadium with a bang, racing away with a 3-0 lead.

He is honest enough to admit that a foul committed by him fetched a penalty corner from which Juan Amat scored. Amat later went on to score from another penalty corner.

"But we hung on to our 4-3 lead till the end, and all of us were relieved at the referee's long hooter," Dungdung said.He said he has prayed for the Indian hockey team taking on Holland in its first match tomorrow in London.

(Agencies)

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