Tag Archive for 'ritirarsi'

It’s very difficult for champions to agree to retire

To give an explanation for why many champions do not retire come an age when this would seem to be the best decision, and here the thought goes to 37-year-old Novak Djokovic, an article in The Guardian cites the story of Archie Moore (1916-1998), world light heavyweight champion and one of the longest-lived boxers, happily married and father of two daughters. When he was 47 years old and still world championship, he said:

“I’m still the old mongoose in there trying to outwit and outhit the younger guys,” he said. “I’m like the drunk in the bar who wants one more for the road. I want one more knockout to add to my record and then just one more after that. Some people say it’s great when a man retires undefeated. But a champion should fight to the finish and go out with his hands cocked just as he came in. It’s the proper exit and I think it may be mine.”

He fought for three more years and retired at age 50 with 186 wins.

Djokovic is aware of what is happening to him and is trying the coaching change card, perhaps to find new stimulation, what does not detract from the fact that his thinking today is quite clear and his decision will depend on how well he can accept this inevitable decline and the sadness it entails:

“We all know that those moments will come for all of us,” he said. “But when they actually come, and when you actually understand that that’s it – that Roger finished his career, Rafa and I are probably not going to play much more, it’s kind of one era comes to an end and it’s sad.”

If Roger Federer & Valentino Rossi show that talent is ageless

“Yeah, I’m still here,” sings Vasco Rossi and the same they say Valentino Rossi and Roger Federer. Both came second, proving once again to be worth the first and second place in the world ranking. Many of them have given up for dead on many occasions, stating that they did not know winning no more, they were old or the physical was not  holding them more.

Probably these objection for a while time were true, but any athlete goes through moments like these, often the champions exceed them by changing something in the way they train and live competitions. Most likely the other sink, because they use these negative moments as an excuse to withdraw, because of something they consider superior to them. People often focus their comments on their age, as if it was an essential limit, a characteristic to which we must surrender.

I heard to say: “Federer is old and no longer able to hold that little exchange, otherwise he loses the point.” But how many would like to have this trouble just to be second in the world? They also say that because of this threshold has had to change how you play. True, but why interpret this change as a negative connotation? And instead to emphasize his determination to change to stay on the top of the world ranking. The same it was said until last year for Valentino Rossi: “Why does he not withdraw rather than collect disappointing results?”

The chorus of “why he/she does not abandon” has been told also about other sport champions. In Italy Giovanni Pellielo, in shooting, after three medals in three different Olympics, in London, at age 42, he did not enter the finals and also here the same voices, he has not noticed them, he has trained and the following year again won the world championship. Valentina Vezzali, 41, fencer, she won everything repeatedly, and she wants to go to Rio. Not to mention Andrea Pirlo and Gigi Buffon and the dream they are living in these days with Juventus. We have to evaluate these men and women for their performances but not to the age. Above all we have to learn from them, because they are an example of fighting mentality in the face of difficulty and humility in dealing with the daily sacrifices, that are needed to return to excel in their sports, without being sure to succeed in this venture.