Vocabulary, Slang and Definitions

25 Random Essential Billiards Terms

Name for the ball that when pocketed, wins the game, or any ball that when made results in a payday such as a way in the game of Chicago.
This is the running score of a player during his inning of play. The sum of the continuously scored points, or where the player stands in the run on the table.
(Computerized Numerical Control) This is a special appliance used by many cue manufacturers to design the inlays on a cue to precision accuracy. Often times it is looked down upon because this technology departs from the previous standard of "handcrafting" inlays, using a pantograph tool. However, the new technology allows for much more precise cuts at a quicker pace. If you are looking to save some money and appreciate the man made designs that are computer inlayed in your cue, then CNC is the technology for you.
A slang term for a cue, usually used with "piece", as in "that's a nice piece of wood".
When the cue ball contacts three or more cushions in carom games.
The pool player who is at the table taking their shot.
Cut Throat is a game of pocket billiards created to support three or five players. Balls are assigned to each player, and the purpose is to sink all the opponent's balls first to eliminate the other players.
This playing to a number less than eight in a game of one pocket.
This is an attempt where one player answers the other players successful shot or run with a successful shot or run.
In snooker, the abandonment of a frame upon agreement between the players, so that the balls can be set up again and the frame restarted with no change to the score since the last completed frame. This is the result of situations, such as trading of containing safeties, where there is no foreseeable change to the pattern of shots being played, so the frame could go on indefinitely.
In pool, placing of the object balls back in the rack, after a foul break.
A shot in which the cue ball is driven first to one or more rails, then hits an object ball and kisses back to the last rail contacted. It is a common shot in carom games, but can be applied to such an instance in any relevant cue sport.
Accidentally causing the cue ball or any object ball to leave the table. It is normally a foul.
To maneuver a ball on a shot so that it will be favorably positioned for later play into a particular pocket, even at the expense of sacrificing position or the inning to achieve that result.
This is when you strike a cue ball off center to gain control on the movement on the cue ball.
Also Gentleman's call. An informal approach to the "call-everything" variation of call-shot, common in bar pool. Obvious shots, such as a straight-on or near-straight shot for which the shooter is clearly aiming and which could not be mistaken for another shot, need not be called. Bank shots, kicks, caroms and combinations are usually less obvious and generally must be called, though this may depend upon the mutual skill level and shot selection perception of the players. An opponent has the right to ask what the shooter's intention is, if this is unclear.
Any standard pool cue used to shoot the majority of shots in a match.
Also money-added. Said of a tournament in which the pot of money to pay out to the winner(s) contains sponsor monies in addition to competitor entry fees. Often used as an adjective: "a money-added event".
This is the point on the object ball where the cue exactly impacts or the point at which two balls touch when they impact.
A Carom game with lines drawn to form rectangles that restrict play and reduce the potential for high runs.
Chiefly American: The short rail at the foot of the table. Frequently used imprecisely, to mean foot cushion. Compare top rail; contrast head rail.
A bridge formed by the hand where no finger loops over the shaft of the cue. Typically, the cue stick is channeled by a "v"-shaped groove formed by the thumb and the base of the index finger.
Also topspin, top-spin, top. Same as follow. Contrast bottom spin, back spin.
The person who is a provider of all or part of a player's stake (money) for a gambling session in which one is not a player.
The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association, founded in 1968 and based in Bristol, England, United Kingdom is the governing body of professional snooker and English billiards. It sets the sports' rules, organises tournaments and the pro-am and pro tours, and engages in various promotional activities.
When a ball is in firm contact with a cushion or another ball.