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Sami Zayn talks about sacrifices to become a WWE star, being an arab role-model

Ratish Menon
Modified 12 Feb 2015, 17:59 IST
Sami Zayn is of Arab descent

Former WWE NXT champion Sami Zayn recently spoke with to promote WWE’s tour of Abu Dhabi. Below are some highlights:

Being an inspiration for children in the Middle East:
“I do feel in a lot of ways that I’m living proof that anything is possible. I was the most unlikely looking 15-year-old kid with a dream and now that dream is coming true, so I feel in a lot of ways if I can do it then someone else can. It’s definitely something important to me [to be a positive role model for Arabs]. I was born in Montreal but my parents are both from Syria [and] immigrated to Canada, so I was very much brought up [as an Arab]. I never felt like we had proper representation, the only sort of Middle Eastern representation I remember while growing up was the Iron Shaikh [Iranian wrestler Hussain Khosrow Ali Vaziri], who was the big villain at the time.”

Advice he would give on making it to WWE:
“It’s been 13 years for me to get to this point, it never felt hard, it never felt like work. It was just part of a journey that I accepted, I never dragged myself to work, there’s just sort of a mental acceptance of what it took, and when you have that mental acceptance and that love and passion then it doesn’t really feel like work.”

Challenges that come with being a WWE Superstar:
“If you really stop and think about it, you’re absolutely right. There’s a lot of sacrifices, a lot of hard work and a lot of injuries and everything else you’re going to have to sustain. Family you’re going to have to leave behind, friends as well, everything you can imagine you have to put that away and that is a hard thing. But because I accepted that from day one it almost never felt like a chore to me, so as far as advice it really just comes from a place of love.”

Published 12 Feb 2015, 17:50 IST
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