The encounter with MS Dhoni happened four years ago when the Indian team was at the PCA stadium in Mohali ahead of their World T20 tie against Australia.
Former Pakistan captain and coach, Hasan Sardar, an outstanding centre-forward himself, said he took a lot of inspiration by hearing stories and anecdotes about Balbir Singh Sr.
The Indian Express recounts its encounters with the legend
Balbir Singh Senior spent a major part of his life in Chandigarh post retirement
A goal-scoring machine from the days when hockey was played on grass, Balbir Singh Sr won three Olympic golds — 1948, 1952 and 1956 — and was India’s most-decorated athlete ever.
I feel very lucky to share my name with him. There may have been six Balbir Singhs who have played for India. But there will always be one Balbir Singh Senior.
His teammates, the players he coached and old friends recall the qualities that set Balbir Singh Dosanjh apart
Balbir Singh Sr and Milkha Singh competed together at the highest level for the country in their respective games and even worked together for Punjab Sports department in the 1960's.
Tulsidas Balaram was part of the national football team that finished a historic fourth in the 1956 Olympics and remembered how Balbir Singh took pain-killing injections before the summit clash.
He didn't always need a hockey stick to pull it off for India, that was the kind of magic Balbir Singh Sr could weave, which steered a "demoralised" national team to its first and only World Cup gold back in 1975.
The sporting world woke up to the sad news and moaned the loss of the iconic hockey player.
Balbir Singh Sr's record for most goals scored by an individual in the men's hockey final at the Olympics still remains unbeaten.
The cook died of a cardiac arrest and later tested positive for Covid-19, according to a top official, who said there was no reason to panic as the deceased had no access to the players' accommodation zone.
Eight-time Olympic gold medallists India have been world champions just once and Aslam Sher Khan recalls how he prevented the dream dying a premature death.
The 1975 World Cup-winning Ashok Diwan had made a distress call to the IOA President Narinder Batra last month, requesting him to take his plea to the higher authorities.
The minister gave a patient hearing to the homesick hockey players and took note of feedback during the online meeting which was attended by 34 men and 24 women hockey players.
Guidelines state players must review their status on the app and only those who are in 'safe' or 'low-risk' category will be allowed to take part in tournaments.
Balbir Singh Senior was part of the Indian contingent that won the Olympics gold medal in 1948, 1952, and 1956.
Hockey legend Balbir Singh Sr, a triple Olympic gold medallist, has been admitted to a Chandigarh hospital in critical condition.
Indian sports administrator Narinder Batra's term as FIH President was on Friday extended till world body's next Congress, which was postponed to May next year due to the uncertainty surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic.