Life begins at 40

He turns 40 tomorrow but the end isn't on the horizon for Peter Stringer

“If I play once I am 40 then I will want to get to 42-43,” said the Worcester Warriors scrum-half.

Peter Stringer Peter Stringer in action for Worcester Warriors. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

PETER STRINGER BELIEVES he could continue to play for several more years, despite the fact that tomorrow marks his 40th birthday.

The former Munster scrum-half is currently plying his trade with Worcester Warriors, although his contract with the Aviva Premiership club expires in a couple of weeks.

Having been released by Sale Sharks at the end of last season, Stringer signed a short-term deal with Worcester to provide cover while South Africa’s Francois Hougaard was unavailable due to international commitments.

“If the right opportunity comes up then I will go for it,” Stringer said today in an interview with The Daily Telegraph. “Whatever environment I am in I want it to be competitive and ambitious.

“That’s my main aim: to be a part of something special. And I want to be a part of it. I don’t want to be a hanger-on. I want to add value to a place, not just continuing for the sake of it.”

Stringer, who’s approaching 20 years as a professional having made his Munster debut in 1998, has made one start and five substitute appearances for Worcester this season.

The 98-cap Irish international first left Munster back in 2011 when he joined Saracens on loan. Having been deemed surplus to requirements with his home province, Stringer admits he subsequently grew “a little bit obsessive” about looking after himself physically.

inpho_00032860 Stringer made his Ireland debut against Scotland in the 2000 Six Nations campaign. INPHO / Patrick Bolger INPHO / Patrick Bolger / Patrick Bolger

“I would have massive regrets in my life if I had the opportunity to be back out there playing week in, week out and I was not in the best possible shape that I could be,” he said.

“I find that it comes down to the 21-22 hours a day when you are not training that contributes to the longevity. It is about what you do when you get home when you are away from the eyes of the coaches and nutritionists.”

A two-time European Cup winner, Stringer — who has also had spells with Bath and Newcastle Falcons — believes 40 is by no means the cut-off point for his career.

He said: “It is not a thought of me thinking I am hanging on until I am 40. That’s not the case. You come across a lot of people and their workload is reduced as they get older, but if I can keep my workload the same and keep training at the same intensity then there’s no reason why I can’t continue into my 40s because my game is about playing at three-quarters pace.

“40 is a great number to get to but it is similar to being on 98 Ireland caps. 100 would have been nice but then I would have wanted to get to 110, 120. This is the same. If I play once I am 40 then I will want to get to 42-43.”

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