One of the most difficult things sports stars struggle to deal with is why their performance dips when they get older, particularly in the latter stages of their careers. They are no longer as sharp as they used to be, while their concentration also declines. Here is a look at four players who are still defying the age factor and remain at the top of their respective sports.
In 2022, Tom Brady will return for his 23rd season in the NFL sports competition. When the new regular season begins in September, he will be 45 years old. The seven-time Super Bowl winner retired at the end of the 2021/22 campaign. However, his retirement lasted just 40 days.
Brady showed last season that he remains one of the elite quarterbacks in the NFL. He scored 43 passing touchdowns, the second-highest tally of his career. The Tampa Bay man threw for 5,316 yards, the most he has managed in a season, while he led his team to the play-offs.
The Bucs QB has been fortunate not to have too many injuries throughout his career. However, Brady has dedicated himself to his sport. He has looked at every minor detail, from his diet to his training, to ensure his body stays in the best shape possible for the sport he plays. It remains to be seen how long the future Hall of Famer has left in the NFL. He will be doing all he can to try and win Super Bowl ring number eight in February.
Although snooker may not be a physical game, the history books clearly show that the best players all decline once they reach the age of 40. Steve Davis and Stephen Hendry both prove that to be the case.
Ronnie O’Sullivan is the exception to the rule. At the age of 46, the Rocket won his seventh World Snooker Championship at the Crucible earlier this year. It helped him to secure his position at the top of the world rankings.
O’Sullivan remains the box office ticket due to the WST entertainment he provides. He looks motivated to keep on playing into his 50s. The man from Essex is a keen runner, and he has stated that his fitness has played a big part in his success in snooker.
No fast bowler has taken more ICC Test wickets than James Anderson in cricket. The England man has over 600 Test wickets to his name. He first made his debut for England in 2003 and he continues to be one of their most important players.
Anderson is now 39 years old, so his body is unlikely to handle a full summer of cricket. His national team will, therefore, have to manage his schedule carefully. He has been named in the squad for England’s Test series against New Zealand. As of the 25th of May, the hosts are +105 in the Betway betting India to win the series against the number one ranked team in the world. Anderson will need to be at his best for his side to the take the wickets they need. At this stage of his career, Anderson will also play a big role in becoming a role model for the younger members of the England squad. They will see how he prepares for matches, particularly when they travel for ECB arranged matches.
Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo is considered one of the greatest soccer players of all time. At the end of the 2021/22 Premier League season, the Portuguese forward had scored over 800 career goals.
Ronaldo returned to Manchester United last summer and despite being 37 now, he ended the season as their top goalscorer, with 24 goals in all competitions. New United boss Erik ten Hag has already said how important the player will be for him next season, as the Manchester club aims to challenge for the title again.
The Portugal international could continue playing into his 40s. He is in great physical shape, and the position he plays in now is not quite as demanding as when he was on the wing in the early stages of his career.
All four of the above share the same motivation to produce excellence. It would be no surprise if they all remain active in a few years’ time and are still having success.
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