Top 15 Athletes Who Lied About Their Age

One might think that it would be easy to prove the age of an athlete who takes part in any meaningful competition. That athlete must, after all, provide documentation to some committee before he or she is able to compete. A simple enough background check should be able to determine whether or not an athlete is lying about his age, where he/she is from, or about any other information that could potentially make them ineligible for one reason or another. In this world where just about anybody can access the Internet and public records, an athlete trying to hide his age should, in theory, be downright silly.

That has not always, however, been the case. There have been numerous cases across a variety of sports of athletes trying to lie about their real ages. The reasons an athlete may have for lying about his age vary per the situation. One may lie about his age just so that he can, per the rules of a competition, be allowed to be on a team. Others may do so because of legal ramifications. Then, there are the cases of athletes who lied about their ages all because they were trying to hide far more than just when they were truly born.

Some of the stories featured in this list are, to put it bluntly, rather strange. The one that may immediately come to mind for an American sports fan could be the famous tale of the Little League Baseball pitcher who dominated opponents and who also seemed to be physically superior to everybody else on the field. Suspicions that people had about that young man were proven to be just, as his family had lied about his age so that he could compete in the tournament featured on national television. One has to wonder if we will ever see any other family try something similar at a future Little League World Series.

14 Marv Levy

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

13 Nigerian Footballers

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

12 Alexandra Marinescu


11 Miguel Tejada

10 Carlos Alberto


9 Rafael Furcal

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

8 Alf Ramsey


7 Wandy Rodriguez

Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

6 Dong Fangxiao

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

5 Kim Gwang-suk


4 Shabazz Muhammad

Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

3 Fausto Carmona/Roberto Hernandez

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

2 Tom Shaw


1 Danny Almonte


Odds are that you are at least somewhat familiar with this story. Danny Almonte was a dominating pitcher throughout the 2001 Little League World Series, and he pitched a perfect game during a round-robin match-up. It was learned after the LLWS that documents for Almonte had been altered and that he was actually two years too old to participate in the competition. Almonte and his team were, thus, rightfully disqualified and stripped of their LLWS victories. One could feel sorry for Almonte here. Almonte was, after all, just part of a scam that included his birth parents lying about his age.

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Top 15 Athletes Who Lied About Their Age