Goalkeepers dominate the list of the most experienced individuals in the quadrennial mega event.
The 2023 edition of the Men’s Hockey World Cup is the 15th edition and before this, there are several players who represented their country at the fag end of their careers. Interestingly the top five oldest players in the 14 editions of the World Cup have all come after the 2010 edition.
In this article let us look at the top five oldest players to have played in the World Cup.
David Carter (37) 2018 World Cup Odisha, India
David Carter from Canada was a goalkeeper and played in the 14th edition of the Men’s Hockey World Cup. He made his debut way back in 2007 against Chile and in his decade-long journey has represented Canada 136 times winning 53 times.
In the 2018 World Cup Canada finished eleventh and was also the last edition for David as Canada hasn’t qualified for the 2023 edition.
The last major achievement of Carter’s career was winning the silver medal at the Pan American Games losing to Argentina. This was his fourth silver at the Pan American Games. He has also played at the Olympic Games and the Azlan Sultan Shah Cup.
Ignacio Gilardi (37) 2018 World Cup Odisha, India
Ignacio Gilardi from Argentina is a retired field hockey player who last represented the country at the 2018 World Cup. Overall the defender has represented Argentina 174 times and the most famous moment was winning the gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Brazil.
Argentina lost in the quarterfinals in the last edition of the World Cup and finished seventh overall. Gilardi was keen to continue his career but the coach had other plans which made the defender retire after the 2018 World Cup.
Rob Short (37) 2010 World Cup New Delhi, India
The 50-year-old from Canada last played in the 2010 World Cup and was one of the most important strikers for the nation. The two memorable moments shall be winning the Pan American games twice and in 2007 they defeated Argentina and claimed a spot in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Apart from representing Canada Short has played club hockey in Europe majorly in the Netherlands (HC Rotterdam, Laren, and HGC).
Kumar Subramanium (39) 2018 World Cup Odisha, India
The goalkeeper from Malaysia represented the country for two decades and has played a record 323 times. He made his debut in 1999 and retired in 2020 with the 2018 World Cup being his last major event. He played a pivotal role in Malaysia winning the silver medal at the 2010 Asian Games.
Subramanium was the first Malaysian player to play in a foreign league when he represented Uttar Pradesh wizards in the Hockey India League. Overall the goalkeeper was part of two silver medal-winning Asian Games teams.
Juan Vivaldi (39) 2018 World Cup
The Argentinian goalkeeper has represented Argentina for more than two decades from 2001 to 2021 and played a total of 288 games. Vivaldi was the first choice reserve during the 2004 Athens Olympics but since then has been the first choice till the end of his career.
Argentina did not have much success during any of the Olympic games across the last two decades finishing 11th and 10th at the 2004 and 2012 Olympic Games respectively but came back stronger to win gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Along with winning the gold at the Olympics, he was also part of the bronze medal-winning World Cup team in 2014.
*The source for the data is Hockey Passon
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