Is it true in general that if someone who does not show any talent in maths during school (i.e. performs average in maths competitions and tests) will not succeed in pure maths research if that person chooses to do so? Hence that person is not likely to become a professor if he/she chooses to be a pure maths academic and will mostly be doing teaching duties? Hence for these people, a more applied subject involving maths will be better suited. I am aware that hard work is most important but in the case of producing top quality pure maths published in repected journals, ability and talent is also an essential ingredient?