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New Face New Force: Chinglensana Singh (1/9/2013)
--Shashank Gupta
Here’s a short riddle:

- If you break up this player’s name into three, those three words mean: Mountain, Snow and Ear-ring.
- A stand-bye for Asian Champions Trophy ’11, this player made it to the tournament, almost. -
Just that he didn’t have a passport!

If you haven’t got it yet, here’s the give-away clue: He is short and hails from Manipur -the state which has produced a number of international Hockey players for the country.

21-year old, Chinglensana Singh Kangujam, popularly known as ‘Chinglen’, has been knocking at the National team’s door for long.

In Manipuri, Ching stands for mountain, Len is snow and Sana is the word for an ear-ring. However, Chinglensana as a word has a larger significance in the Manipur region. It’s the name to a fatherly-figure of the state. undefined

Chinglen’s introduction to Hockey was at the age of eight, dating back to ’99, when he went to watch the 5th National Games hosted by Manipur.

Few years of guidance by legends like Brojen Singh, and Chinglen was in Delhi in 2006 to display his talent for the Manipur team at the Nehru Society tournament, in the under-17 category.

His talent was noticed by PNB Academy – he spent one year there – and thereafter, Chinglen has played for a number of teams, Mumbai Porters, Mumbai Customs to name a few.

Eventually, luck favored Chinglen and he found employment with Indian Railways in 2009. Chinglen’s talent can be judged from the fact that Indian Railways lost in the Semi-Finals of Surjit Hockey Tournament in 2009 but Chinglen was adjourned as the best player of the tournament.

This gave the kick which he had waited for long – call from the Indian camp in 2010-11.

But was it destiny or luck, Chinglen remained in the stand-bye list for a while and the closest he came to wear the Team India uniform was in Asian Champion Trophy ’11 in Ordos, China.

Two players dropped out from the team, and the replacement was to come from the stand-byes. Chinglen was told that he was almost there but he missed the bus because of not having a passport.

“I went and fought with people back home to get my passport done,” says an ever-smiling Chinglen.

Finally, when he got his passport, Chinglen got a chance to play the Champions Challenge in 2011 followed by India-South Africa Test Series. He remains honest about his performance there.

“It was a weak performance on my part because of little international experience,” says the Mumbai Magicians forward.

But he has own style of motivating himself after such down-times.

“If others can do it, why can’t I do,” is how Chinglen brings himself back to the turf with passion and a heart to improve upon his game.

And now, with the focus back on youngsters in the Indian team, Chinglen has a promising future. His rejuvenated performance in the recently concluded Asian Champions Trophy has earned him applause.

This site has named him the Best Younger Player of the year 2012

This “Twilight Saga -Breaking Dawn-Part II” fan has a unique humane side of his. It is well known that players hailing from North-east lead a hard life.

“Even if I plan to go home on a short notice, with various flight connections, it takes me almost one day to reach home,” tells this short, frequent gym-visitor.

And the uniqueness is not in the fact that he connects to him mom when he feels lonely, it is how she remains concerned about the well-being of this upcoming player of the Indian Hockey team.

“Mom will always tell me don’t indulge in smoking, drinking and any wrong activities. She tells me to return back home early as she feels scared because of the off late attacks on people hailing from North-East,” tells Chinglen gingerly.

Chinglen is a part of the Mumbai Magicians team in the upcoming Hockey India League.

Under the World’s top coach, Ric Charlesworth, Chinglenwill have many snow (Len) covered mountains (Ching) to conquer. And has he gifted an ear-ring (Sana) to anyone as yet?

He blushes, and with an embarrassed look on his face says, “No, no..nothing like that. I am just a fan of Kate Winslet and Katrina Kaif.”

Editor's Note: One of the best portrayals of a player, well done Shashank.

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