Hotshot pool star Adam right on cue

Ottery resident, Adam Nickels, gives a Masse pool art master class . Picture by Alex Walton. Ref sho

Ottery resident, Adam Nickels, gives a Masse pool art master class . Picture by Alex Walton. Ref sho 0787-33-14AW - Credit: Archant

A trick-shooting Ottery man who competed in a prestigious Las Vegas pool tournament has returned home crowned England’s number one.

Adam Nickels, 34, recently took part in the World Artistic Pool Competition alongside the sport’s top players after receiving an unexpected invite from a former champion, writes Harvey Gavin.

And despite only taking the sport up five months ago, the Cadhay Lane resident managed to exceed expectations and finish in 25th place overall.

Artistic pool is played on an American sized table and requires participants to execute a repertoire of 56 trick-shots which test a range of skills.

Each player has just three tries to complete each shot, and missed attempts means points dropped from a possible total of 320.

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After dealing with some initial problems – including playing on a larger table than he was used to - former King’s School pupil Adam held his nerve to beat his target of 150 and record a score of 166.

He put in up to six hours’ practice each day in the build-up to the competition after receiving an invite from former world number one Andy ‘The Magic Man’ Segal - who saw one of his trick-shot videos online.

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“I couldn’t believe it to start with, it was completely unexpected,” said Adam. “I went straight out and bought an American pool table and started practising.”

Following his trip to Nevada, Adam hopes to raise awareness of the sport in the UK, and is in the process of organising a show featuring in Exeter one of the world’s top ten.

“My dream is to get an English cup set up,” he added. “With snooker being so big here, I think this is something exciting, fun and different for people to go and see.”

His performance in Vegas sees Adam enter the worldwide rankings in 60th place - as well as number one in England.

“I’m number one but that’s because I’m the only English player who does it,” he said. “So that technically makes me the worst in England as well.”

See a video of Adam in action at

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