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 Parminder Singh Saini action 1988 OG


19.09.1957 – 30.05.2021

Parminder (Kake) Singh Saini who represented Kenya the Los Angeles 1984 and Seoul 1988 Olympic Games died in Kisumu on 30 May – a Covid-19 victim, aged 63.

Parminder died on the same day he was due to join other Kenyan Olympic players at a Zoom get-together. He had confirmed his attendance and was looking towards this event. The sad news of his passing came just four hours after the Zoom conference, attended by some 20 Kenyan Olympians, ended.

In a sign of the esteem in which 'Kake' was held, a minute's silence was observed during the Madaraka Day celebrations in Kisumu on 1 June. Madaraka Day is a national holiday commemorating Kenya's independent self-governance following British colonial rule.

Randiek Nashon, Chairman of Kenya Hockey Union said on hearing the sad news:

"Parminder Singh Saini was a great hockey player who represented this country for a long time. On my own behalf and [on behalf of my] family, the Kenya Hockey Union Council, the hockey fraternity, and the Olympic family and friends, we extend our sincere condolences".

Avtar Singh Sohal, Kenya’s legendary player and coach said on hearing the news:
"I played and coached Kaka. He was one of the greatest Kenyan players. He had smile all the time, a humble down-to-earth and adorable person. We all will miss him, especially the hockey fraternity. We have lost a great sports personality. May the Almighty rest his soul in eternal peace. Heartfelt condolences to his family and friends."

Parminder was born on 19 September 1957 in Kisumu, Kenya. He studied at Miwani Primary School, Kisumu and Kisumu Boys High School. He played hockey for Kisumu Boys High School until 1976.

In 1976 he travelled to the UK for further studies and studied at Langley College in Slough, Berkshire. He joined Slough Hockey Club, one of the top hockey clubs in the country at the time and played for the club’s first team until 1979.

He returned to Kenya in 1979 and joined Kisumu Simba Union Club.

Parminder represented Kenya at the Six Nations Tournament in Loisano, Italy where he earned his first international cap when he was selected to play against India on 5 September 1981.

He captained Kenya at the East African Championship in Tanga, Tanzania in 1983.

He played in the test series against India in Kenya and captained the team in the fourth test match in June 1983.

He was selected to represent Kenya at the Los Angeles Olympic Games in 1984 scoring two goals against Canada and one goal against USA.

He represented Kenya at the All African Games in Nairobi in August 1987.

He played at the Lada Classic Tournament in Luton, England in August 1988.

Parminder was selected to represent Kenya at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games and played at the Indira Gandhi Memorial Tournaments in India.

He played for Africa in the inaugural Inter-Continent Tournament played in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in December 1990.

He played his last international match against Zimbabwe in Nairobi on 13 February 1993.

After retiring from playing, Parminder coached Kisumu Simba Union.

He was Manager of the Kenya national team at the All Africa Games in South Africa in 1999 and was the vice chairman of Kenya Hockey Union from 2014 to 2015. At the time of his passing he remained a technical advisor.

Parminder Singh Saini was born in Kisumu, Kenya and died in Kisumu, Kenya.



By Dil Bahra
Article courtesy of Sikhs in Hockey.


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