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Petr Cech went to hockey. Who else from the stars changed the sport?
Recently, the sports world was shocked by the news that the legendary goalkeeper of football clubs Chelsea and Arsenal Petr Cech signed a contract with the British hockey club Guildford Phoenix. The athlete has already changed his football equipment to shin guards and skates and made his debut in the match against Swindon Wildcats.
The transition was so unexpected that we decided to recall other unique stories of athletes who once wanted to try something new. Our selection includes the stars of the world arena who have radically changed their profile sport.
Petr Cech played hockey. Dragged, won and got into the arms of the whole team
The legendary football goalkeeper won the first victory on the ice.
Lolo Jones: from running to bobsleigh
American track and field athlete Lori Lolo Jones made history as one of the few female athletes to compete in both the Summer and Winter Olympics. Jones started her career by running the 60 and 100 meters hurdles. She became the World Indoor Short Distance Champion twice - in 2008 and 2010. But in the finals of the races at the Olympic Games in Beijing and London, luck turned away from Jones: the athlete stopped a step away from the podium. However, Lolo decided to continue to fight for her dream and radically changed her life. Laurie herself once stated in an interview:
In the end, the girl chose bobsleigh. For the sake of practicing a new sport, Jones gained 13 kilograms and began to actively train as part of bobsleigh doubles. After some time, the first successes came to her in the form of prizes at the World Cups. Then there was a breakthrough: Laurie won gold in the 2013 Mixed Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Championship. She received an offer to become part of the US national Olympic team. Laurie Jones went to her first Olympics in Sochi with pro Elana Myers. The girl returned, although without medals, but with satisfied ambitions.
Usain Bolt: Lightning in football
Eight-time Olympic champion in short run Usain Bolt was nicknamed the Lightning by fans from all over the world, because he is the fastest man on earth. At the 2017 World Athletics Championships, Bolt was unable to defend his titles and immediately retired after the competition.
Stepping off the tracks, the athlete announced that he would like to start a career in professional football. Usain's dream was Manchester United, but the English club is not so easy to take, even for sports pull. However, Bolt's career includes an open training session with Borussia Dortmund, games for the Norwegian club Strömsgodset and the England national team club Old Trafford.
Even if Bolt's football career does not work out, the athlete does not intend to despair. In an interview, Usain said that he had already ensured a decent life for himself for many years to come, and now he just wants to train for his own pleasure - his athlete finds it in football.
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Florent Manaudou: from swimming to a dry zone
Florent Manaudou is an Olympic champion in 50m freestyle swimming and world record holder in short course from France. After the games in Rio in 2016, the athlete announced that he was taking a career break to seriously rethink what he was doing and, probably, to change the type of activity.
Manodou's choice fell on handball: Florent had been playing it since 2003, but eventually devoted himself entirely to professional swimming. The athlete trained actively for the French club Aix-en-Provence in the first division, but the love of swimming still won. In March this year, the athlete announced his return to the pool. Florent intends to train actively to take part in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Michael Jordan: Success in Basketball and Failure in Baseball
After his third consecutive victory in the 1993 NBA Championship with the Chicago Bulls, the great Michael Jordan announced that he had lost interest in basketball and intended to take up baseball. Many took this step of Jordan as an admission of athletic impotence. Detractors said Jordan had exhausted himself as a basketball player.
However, the Main Baseball club league Major League Baseball Chicago White Sox gladly signed a contract with Jordan, after which the former basketball player spent 127 matches with a bat in his hands. But Jordan's baseball career was short-lived, with Michael's hitting rates extremely low. The athlete had enough intelligence and talent to understand this in time. After two sports seasons, in 1995, Michael Jordan announced his return to basketball. By the way, the athlete's first game after the break turned out to be one of the highest rated in the 1975 regular season.
Primož Roglić: a jump into cycling
Primož Roglich began his professional career with a popular winter sport in his native Slovenia - jumpingskiing from the springboard. At the age of 17, the young man won silver at the World Youth Championship in the team event, and then the junior champion title in 2007.
Roglich's business went uphill until he was injured in a fall from a springboard at a competition in his home Planica. But the young athlete did not give up. He slowly but surely recovered, started jumping again and even set a personal best at Oberstdorf with a jump of 183 meters. However, Roglich did not show more outstanding results in jumps: his participation in the competition was limited only to the stages of the continental cup.
In 2013, the young man made a decision that turned his life upside down. Roglich decided to become a professional road cyclist. Fate appreciated his courage, and success came to the Slovenian athlete pretty quickly. Primozh won his first victory the next year, winning the stage of the Tour of Azerbaijan. And then - a triumph in the one-day race Croatia - Slovenia, the signing of a contract with the Dutch world-class team Jumbo-Visma, bronze at the Alto da Foya stage. The peak of the career of the newly minted cyclist was the victory at the ninth stage of the Giro d'Italia and the won title of the champion of Slovenia.
At his first Olympics in Rio 2016, Primoj finished 10th in the individual race. Now the athlete continues to actively train to prepare for the next Olympics. The rider has the fuse and potential for this. Most recently, on September 20, at the World Championships in Norway, Roglich won silver in the individual race.