Sardar Singh was one of the few players in the Indian team whose performance could be rated satisfactory despite the country’s poor showing in the World Cup. And continuing with that form, he was adjudged ‘Best Player of the Tournament’ in the Sultan Azlan Shah Cup in Malaysia.
The versatile player, who played in the mid-field during the World Cup but donned the role of a defender in Malaysia, told Hindustan Times that, 'Shifting the position has paid dividends. During the World Cup, I played in the mid-field but there I couldn’t justify my presence. So, I requested my coach to allow me to play in defence and he agreed. Now, I want to establish myself as a defender.'
In his new position, he bagged the ‘Man of the Series Award’ in the seven-match Test series against Canada last year in August and was named the player of the tournament in the Champions Challenge Cup, where India won bronze.
Talking about the Azlan Shah tournament, he said, 'The tournament has always been a lucky outing for me. Three years ago when I captained the side, we grabbed silver. It was after a gap of 14 years that we made it to the final.'
'This time around, I got the ‘Best Player Award’. We played good hockey in all the matches except against Malaysia, where we committed a mistake by taking them lightly as we had already qualified for the final.'
“As far as my individual showing is concerned, I rate my performance against Australia and South Korea the best,” he added.