When age is an advantage: the World Padel Tour's feisty veterans

Over two decades with a racket in hand and at the very top. Talent has no sell-by date.  

When age is an advantage: the World Padel Tour's feisty veterans

They've crossed the psychological barrier of reaching the age of 40. And they've all managed to stay in padel's elite and be competitive. They're winners, they have talent and they're not ready to hang up their racket before handing out a few more masterclasses. Like good wine, they improve over time. Here is our list of old rockers, feisty veterans that are an example of longevity at the top of the game.

Maxi-Grabiel

Maxi Grabiel (12/08/1976) The Argeninte has had a racket in his hand his entire life. This tireless padel player has shared the court with cream of the crop in world padel for over two decades. Grabiel is a reference on tour, a role model for many other players, as well as being the partner that everyone aspires to have. Grabiel has managed to keep up a remarkable standard of play. Last year, alongside Ramiro Moyano, Grabiel finished the season 13th and reached the Master Final. An example of what it takes to stay at the top after reaching 40.

Marcello Jardim - Dieciseisavos Buenos Aires Padel Master

Marcello Jardim (14/07/1973) "You've made a pact with the devil" is a phrase that Marcello has become used to hearing over the years, while he shows a humble smile. The Brazilian, who has been at the top for years, ended 2016 alongside Franco Stupaczuk in 16th place in the rankings, which earned him a place in the Masters. A tireless player on court who proves that, despite having surpassed the age of 40, he can compete in matches that go beyond three hours. Like Gilberto Gil or Caetano Veloso, Jardim's bossa nova continues to make noise on the courts of the World Padel Tour.

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Guillermo Lahoz (26/08/1971) The Wizard Lahoz is the longest serving genius on tour. However, the twilight of his career has brought him his best performances. Willy hasn't only prolonged his career past the age of 40, but he's now at the top of his game.

Willy's talent has enabled him to maintain himself in the higher echelons of the rankings for over two decades. Last year, alongside Aday Santanahis last third of the season was colossal, reaching the semifinals at the Mendoza Open and qualifying for the Estrella Damm Master Final, where he also reached the final four with Aday Santana. The "grandad" of the circuit will play alongside the young Maty Marina this season, because Lahoz still has many lectures to hand out.

Fernando-Poggi

Fernando Poggi (18/07/1976) If you look at the Argentine's physique it's impossible to guess his age. Poggi is over 40 and continues to be a force of nature. Power and quality, enabling him to go toe to toe with any player on tour. Alongside Álvaro Ceperothis backhand court player finished 2016 in 27th. Just like his body, time hasn't had any affect on his competitive appetite and he is ready to continue in 2017.

Jordi-Munoz

Jordi Muñoz (19/08/1976) Like many other geniuses to come out of the Canary Islands, Jordi Muñoz possesses a neverending array of shots and unexpected resources. His shots are the fruit of a natural gift. Muñoz has spent years at the top, leaving people in awe, but most importantly, putting up a fight to everyone on the World Padel Tour.

He will once again play with Pablo Lijó this season, a player he summed up 1660 points with last season and ended 26th in the ranings. This season Muñoz will continue to showcase his magic from the forehand court, proving that talent has nothing to do with age.

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Sebastián Nerone (24/06/1976) The Argentine has almost been on tour for 25 years. Throughout this time, Nerone has reached the top of world padel and won everything there is to win. Despite this, Seba maintains his passion for this sport and that keeps him going every day. A competitive animal of this nature isn't satisfied with merely being on tour. Being at the standard of the very best and defending his place in the elite is what gets Seba going every morning. This all-rounded backhand court player competed at a very high level with Alex Ruíz last year and reached the semifinals of the Buenos Aires Padel Masters. He will look to improve on is 24th place in the rankings and there's no denying Nerone will give everything to achieve that objective. A household name that promises to continue showing his quality.

Gaby Reca Dieciseisavos Buenos Aires Padel Master (3)

Gabriel Reca (10/08/1974) Just like Nerone (who he partnered in two different spells) Reca knows what it's like to reign in padel. The secret is to stay at the top once you've handed over the crown. Gaby, who's been a professional for over 20 years, still has a place amongst the elite. 28th after ending 2016 with Juan Lebrón. This year, alongside Javier Concepción, Gaby Reca will be ready to prove he still has more than enough padel to put doubters against the ropes. Considered to be one of the best forehand court players of all time, he still has plenty of chapters to write.

Padel from another generation that hasn't passed its sell-by date. Examples of competitors that go beyond their era. These veterans are ready to stake their place and we're ready to enjoy the masterclasses they have in store for us.

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