RAY REARDON is currently the oldest player at 45 to have won the World Championships in the modern #Snooker era.

Reardon, now in his 80s, (84) won his sixth and final World title in 1978, a year after the World Championships first moved to the coveted Crucible Theatre in Sheffield and a year when the first UK Championships were first held in 77 - currently the UK qualifiers are taking place in York in the 39th year.

The Welshman was then joined by Stuart Bingham in 2015, as the second oldest player to have won the World Championships in the modern era of the game at the age of 38. Stephen Hendry is still the youngest to have won at 21.

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But in the past three seasons, there has been a spark from the 40 plus players on the tour, who by their own admission would admit to being classed out by the class of 92 players such as Ronnie O'Sullivan, John Higgins, and Mark Williams, all now into their forties and still competing on the circuit and winning trophies.

Watch Ray Reardon in 1981

In the past year, O'Sullivan and Higgins have won an incredible six titles between them, with the 41-year-old Wizard of Wishaw Higgins winning four titles, two non-ranking and two ranking. O'Sullivan has picked up one non-ranking and one ranking title.

Although Mark Williams hasn't yet lifted a ranking title since the 2011 German Masters, at the age of 40 is still competing strongly in events, with only last week beating Higgins in the Coral northern Ireland Open, it is only a matter of time before the Welsh potting machine is lifting his 19th ranking title.

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And, it can only be a matter of time before O'Sullivan and Higgins are lifting their 29th respectively.

Experience over youth

With a flurry of Eurosport experts predicting O'Sullivan will lift his sixth UK Championship by the beginning of next month, it's very likely that in future, Reardon's record of the oldest World Champion at 45, will be broken, if not equalled, within the next five years. it's not impossible.

Although there are so many great young players about on the scene - particularly from China, good experience is still prevailing over youth.

42-year-old Mark King is a testament to that by winning his first ranking title in Belfast after beating in the semi-finals, a talented Kyren Wilson and then beating an experienced Barry Hawkins in the final 9 - 8.

.There are still other players of the past who are starting to shine through.

Anthony Hamilton. 45, may not have a ranking title to his name yet, but he has the will and desire to still hunt for that elusive ranking title.

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He came very close to reaching his third ranking final, albeit making an error in the final frame by feathering the cueball and letting Barry Hawkins in to win.

And let's not forget that there are some players in their very late 30s, who are still performing to a high level. The likes of Barry Hawkins, 37, Ali Carter, 37, are all on the rise.

Both have already appeared in World finals but were pipped by a rampant O'Sullivan.

And in last season's World Championships 45-year-old Alan McManus was on the verge of reaching the World final but for an impressive Ding Junhui.

The only question is, who out of the class of 92 is likely to win another World title?

And, finally, do you think Reardon's record will ever be beaten, or, indeed equalled?

On this run from the so called snooker "veterans", nothing is impossible.