One Welsh sportsman might have retired over the last few days in Gareth Bale, but rugby league’s Gil Dudson is eyeing up the 2025 World Cup in France, which would see him turn 35 in the same year.
The international prop forward is currently contracted to new club Warrington on a two-year deal, but has no plans on retirement just yet.
And the added motivation to play on again in 2025 comes from his children – who have never seen their father play at a World Cup.
The Trowbridge-born player featured at the 2013 tournament in England for the Dragons, but missed out on the 2017 campaign due to surgery.
His bad luck struck once more for the delayed 2021 tournament, having picked up a three-match ban in his final game for Catalans that saw him miss out on John Kear’s 24-man squad.
However, Dudson insists he could play on beyond his current deal to try and play one last time for Wales on the international stage.
Gil Dudson on 2025 World Cup potential
“I’m a proud Welshman, I wanted to play this year but unfortunately things conspired against me through my own fault,” Dudson told Love Rugby League.
“I might be able to make it (2025 World Cup). It would be pretty cool for my kids to watch me at a World Cup as well. Never say never.
“I’ve got young children who weren’t born when I played in the 2013 tournament, and then I missed 2017 with a surgery. That would be one of my motivations.”
Wales of course will feature in the biggest-ever European Championships in 2023 alongside seven other nations – Ireland, Italy, France, Scotland, Spain, Serbia and England.
The eight nations will contest the European Championship (Euro A) next autumn.
Dudson on Warrington move
Dudson’s move to Warrington sees him join his sixth full-time club ahead of the 2023 campaign. He makes the move to the Halliwell Jones Stadium from Catalans alongside Sam Kasiano and Josh Drinkwater.
“I want to play every week and play as best as I can,” Dudson said. “I think as a team, the minimum will be to compete for 80 minutes every week. With the team that we have here, I think if we can do that, the results will take care of themselves.
“A big theme in pre-season has been competing all the time and pushing each other to make each other better every session.
“There’s a good feeling around the place. There’s quite a few new faces but everyone has settled in pretty well.”
Warrington open the 2023 Super League campaign on Thursday, February 16.