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    Moderator cobalt's Avatar
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    Cool 2010 in review: the age difference

    The past year has shown us one more very clear and interesting picture. There is a growing age difference between the peak periods of the MS and WS players.

    Maybe 10 or 15 years ago, there was not much of an age difference. Mens Singles players would peak anywhere from 24 to 27 years. A few even later. The WS players similarly, would peak around 24-27 years, and some would remain at their peak until even 30 years or thereabouts.

    But things appear to be changing. Although the MS players seem to peak at roughly the same period (24-27 years) the better players are showing the ability to actually maintain that peak performance until 28 or 30 years. In the amazing case of Peter Gade, it goes past 33 years! And this means that with no really sharp new players coming through quickly, we may be faced with a very scrappy, young-versus-old situation at roughly the OG2012 time!

    The WS scene however, has changed drastically. The WS players appear to be peaking much earlier. Most of the top ranked players are now in the 20-22 years age group. The older players (24-28 years) are still around, but just cannot cope with the swiftness and agility of the younger girls. Is it because there are just too many, really good younger girls coming through the system at the same time? Is it because of other factors? One thing is certain: you will not find top ranked players around 26 years or more, in the WS today.

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    Regular Member undeadshot's Avatar
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    Wang Xin is going to be 26 years old this year... maybe its end of the road...

    Ratchanok at 16 this year, hopefully she hasn't even touched her peak

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    Moderator cobalt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by undeadshot View Post
    Wang Xin is going to be 26 years old this year... maybe its end of the road...

    Ratchanok at 16 this year, hopefully she hasn't even touched her peak
    WX... she had the southpaw advantage in a few tournaments, but the next few months should tell its own story.
    RI is definitely on the upward path; I think everyone agrees on that.

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    Moderator cobalt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by undeadshot View Post
    Wang Xin is going to be 26 years old this year... maybe its end of the road...

    Ratchanok at 16 this year, hopefully she hasn't even touched her peak
    WX was taken out by her nemesis Wang YiHan (dysfunctional robot? ) in straight sets in the MOSS SF...
    I think this reinforces my observations. Lets see what happens at the KO...

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    taufik hidayat's age now 29,n in august 2011, he'll 30 years old... but look in BWF worldchamp, he is now world rank #2 after LCW ... and i think his ability,his pace,his fitnes in 2010-2011 will nearly close at his prime era 2001-2006 ....

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    Does that mean the quality of the games was that much higher 10-15 years ago?

    Or is it a result of the new scoring system that some players are able to prolong their playing time?

    Certainly there were some amazing games a decade ago.

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    Not really. For men singles, I think the peak is still 24-27.. Taufik is better now than his 2008 or 2009 counterpart due to more frequnt training but still pale in comparision to his prime era. He even admit that himself. Gade compensate his older physical attribute to better strategies gameplay and technique. You have to admit that his smashes don't quite have the sting like it use to.

    LCW and Lindan....... well both of these player are really physically gifted player. I'm not surprise they manage to extend their prime era.

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    Regular Member Andy05's Avatar
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    I believe it is partly because of the new scoring system that the men have managed to prolong their careers.
    Matches rarely exceed 40 minutes, so the damage to their bodies over that time is reduced, in training I guess they train hard. But when LD and LCW play eachother I guess their lunges and dives are harder than they want them to be.
    I think the women have increased the pace of their game slightly from the old scoring. But I think it's also because better girls are coming through that the age has dropped.

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    Moderator cobalt's Avatar
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    Agree with the observations by Dr. Evil and Andy05. Its true you wont ever see matches like the WC1997 MS Final, any more. The new scoring system has allowed the MS players to pace themselves, and to preserve their fitness much longer. Those who use a combination of brains, skill and physical conditioning will last much longer than those who make the physical aspect the priority.

    But I'm still a bit unsure about the real reasons for the drop in prime age for the WS. It's not going to be an one reason; probably a whole bunch of things. Is it the age we live in, with people developing more interests outside the game? Is it the demands of modern-day sport? Has the competition become more demanding?

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