In two weeks, Yitzhak Hayk will celebrate his 74th birthday.
Instead of sitting at home with his grandchildren, Hayk has some better things to do. For example - playing semi-professional football in a 5th tier club.
On Friday, April 5th, 2019, Hayk, an Iraqi-born Israeli, has set a new Guinness World Record for the oldest footballer ever to take part in an official match. Hayk protected Maccabi Ironi Or Yehuda’s goal for 93 minutes in their Israeli 5th Division loss 4-1 to Ramat Israel. Ramat Israel has guaranteed their spot in the promotion playoffs to 4th division.
At the end of the match, a small ceremony was conducted when an official representative of Guinness World Records handed the veteran goalie his certificate.
Hayk has broken the former record of the oldest active football player, which was set by Robert Carmona (Uruguay) who plays for Club Pan de Azúcar with an age of 53 years and 182 days as of 30 October 2015.
Hayk was born in Iraq in 1945, moved to Israel when he was 5 with his family and is playing football since the early 1960s.
He began his career at Hapoel Or Yehuda, moved around clubs from the same region throughout his career and in the past years he is the goalkeeper of Maccabi Ironi Or Yehuda.
Aside from football, Hayk is the owner of a stage equipment company, which now is enjoying some quality PR.
In a sunny afternoon in the sleepy town of Or Yehuda, a history of world football has been listed.
BabaGol was there and covered the event among other international media outlets, local newspapers and former footballers from the area.
Mazal Tov Yitzhak!