At the ripe old age of 25, Tony Collins first stepped foot on to a wrestling mat and was instantly hooked. Over the course of 32 years, Collins has dedicated his life to honing his skills in the most ancient of martial arts. While many wrestlers bow out of the sport in their 20’s, Collins is still training twice a day and competing at the age of 62. At this year’s British Wrestling Championship, Tony Collins did the unthinkable and took home a bronze medal, defeating 28-year-old, some 34 years his junior.
Collins, from Huyton in Liverpool, told the Liverpool Echo that he was expecting to face opponents his own age in the tournament:
“I was led to believe there would be guys my age in the competition because half of the competition was for wrestling veterans. But the organizers told me there wasn’t anyone near my age group.”
Even though Collins was a marked underdog, the veteran wrestler never doubted himself in the tournament and took home a medal.
Following his success, Collins delivered an inspirational message. “When I was a younger man I would see all the fellas letting themselves go by drinking and smoking or whatever. I always swore that I would never go like them, I would carry on training and looking after my health. My work is hard and my sport is hard.
“People don’t know what they are capable of doing. They are capable of doing a lot more in the gym and in life. They only settle for doing so much, but for me, I train and train. I won’t give it up.”
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