Building up to Birmingham: Sameh Sidhom

Building up to Birmingham: Sameh Sidhom

Billiards star Sameh Sidhom (EGY) started playing billiards when he was less than 3 years old: My dad used to bring home a set of balls and the top half of the cue to teach me how to shoot on our coffee table at home. That’s how it started.” Sidhom was born to the sport: “My dad was one of the top players in Egypt during his time. I guess he passed on his passion for the game to me in the genes. I always used to nag at my dad to take me along to the billiards club, and when he actually did, it was an incredible day for me.

Sameh Sidhom has good memories from his first edition of The World Games: “At the time of The World Games 2017 I was ranked #11 in the world. And then I qualified to the semi-final. The three other players who qualified as well were ranked 1st, 2nd, 3rd in the world. So in order for me to take a medal home, I had to beat one of them. I lost in the semi-final against Dani Sánchez (who later won the gold medal). So I played for the bronze medal against Dick Jaspers, the world’s number 1, and I beat him. I took home the medal.”

Sidhom is looking forward to The World Games 2022 in Birmingham, Alabama. “I expect to see the top athletes of the world competing in a world class competition. I am looking forward to meeting athletes from different sports and sharing our experiences. And I’m looking forward to seeing how grand and well-organized the venues and the event are.” If he has time next to his own competitions, the Billiards star would very much like to see Sumo, Squash, Bowling, and Archery. When asked in which sport he could consider competing if not in his own, Sidhom says it would be interesting to explore Casting and Bowling.

The billiards star is not only a professional billiards player but also dentist by profession. He trains 3-5 hours a day 5-6 days a week, and on his “spare” time he works as a dentist. “I dedicate half of my training time to practicing alone, and the rest to playing practice matches with other players. I don’t usually change my practice routine prior to tournaments; I stick to my normal routine hours and practice. For me, consistency is key. In terms of other sports, I like to stay fit, so I hit the gym a few times a week. I also play darts.

The World Games 2017 bronze medallist just won a second place in the World Cup organised in Las Vegas. One of his fans on social media wanted to know how exciting the atmosphere was, and while Sidhom looked cool on the outside, was he nervous? “It was one of the most exciting tournaments, the fans energy lit up the room with excitement. I was honoured to be there and play the final. It was a strange feeling, but I was feeling confident, both in myself and in my game”, Sidhom says.

Sameh Sidhom also answered to more questions from social media:

-What has been the biggest challenge on your career?

One of the biggest challenges that I have had to face has been the pressure from outside the billiards table, which had a negative impact on my game. I had to learn to block all that while I was on the table and deal with it afterwards.

-Who’s your idol in your sport?

It’s Dani Sanchez.

-What is most difficult in billiards?

That no matter how good you get, you can only control a few aspects of the game, the rest is almost uncontrollable.

-Who’s your fiercest rival?

With the number of great players in our game, every player is going to give you a tough competition.

 The World Games is a multi-sport event staged every four years by the International World Games Association, organised with the support of the International Olympic Committee. The 11th edition of The World Games will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 7-17 July 2022. 3,600 athletes from 34 sports and over 100 countries will take part in The World Games.