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Nikhil Nandy

Some Lesser Known Facts About Nikhil Nandy

  • Nikhil Nandy started playing football with his brothers at his home.
  • Reportedly, he was excluded from the Indian football team for the 1952 Helsinki Olympics which made him sad. The next day, he vowed in front of his family that he would get selected for the 1956 Olympic team at any cost.
  • He was a member of the Bengal team and won the Santosh Trophy in 1955.
    Nikhil Nandy (right) tackling PK Banerjee during a football match

    Nikhil Nandy (right) tackling PK Banerjee during a football match

  • Nikhil Nandy was a member of the famous Indian football team that finished 4th in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics; those years are also known as the Golden Era of Indian Football. He also helped the Indian team to enter the semi-finals of the 1958 Asian Games in Tokyo.
    Indian football squad of 1956 Melbourne Olympics

    Indian football squad of the 1956 Melbourne Olympics

  • In 1958, he won the Calcutta Football League (CFL) as a member of the Eastern Railway team.
    Nikhil Nandy (extreme left) during a match for Eastern Railways

    Nikhil Nandy (extreme left) during a match for Eastern Railways

  • After retiring from football, he became a coach. He also served as joint coach of the Indian football team (with J. Krishnaswamy).
  • He continued giving free football training to teenagers in Kolkata at a local ground in Kolkata.
    Nikhil Nandy during a coaching session

    Nikhil Nandy during a coaching session

  • In 2003, he underwent treatment at SSKM Hospital, Kolkata for prostate gland problems.
    Nikhil Nandy during his treatment in 2003

    Nikhil Nandy during his treatment in 2003

  • Nandy once said that he and other footballers of his era were not given enough credit for their achievements and felt that they were not managed properly by the Indian football management.
  • In 2009, he along with Badru Banerjee and Tulsidas Balaram held a press conference and returned the cheque of Rs 25000, which was given to them by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).
  • A few days before receiving the cheques, they had requested a pension and railway gold pass for ex-Olympians and ex-Indian international players but they received the cheques which they returned.
  • He was a celebrated figure in the Kolkata football circuit and was often invited as chief guest in many tournaments.
    Nikhil Nandy with Sourav Ganguly during a tournament

    Nikhil Nandy with Sourav Ganguly during a tournament

  • In September 2021, Nikhil Nandy contracted COVID-19 due to which he developed some renal problems. He was hospitalised for a month and later returned to his home where his treatment continued. His body later stopped responding to the treatment, and he died on 29 December 2020.
    A photo of Nikhil Nandy taken few days before his death

    A photo of Nikhil Nandy taken a few days before his death

  • He developed Dementia during his late 70s due to which his family members often had to constraint him to home.
    Photos of Nikhil Nandy taken at his home

    Photos of Nikhil Nandy taken at his home

  • He holds a unique record of three brothers playing in the Olympics. His brothers, Santosh and Anil, played in the 1948 London Olympics, and he played in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics.
  • Nikhil Nandy liked calling himself ‘a man of maidan.’
  • In April 2024, a Bollywood film ‘Maidaan’ was released which featured Ajay Devgn as Syed Abdul Rahim, the coach of the Indian football team which qualified for the 1956 Melbourne Olympics.
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