Definition of bottom

Chiefly British: The half of the table from which the break shot is taken. This usage is conceptually opposite that in North America, where this end of the table is called the head.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

To determine the order of play, players (representing only themselves, or teams) each simultaneously shoot a ball from the kitchen (or in British games, from the baulk line) to the end rail and back toward the bottom rail. Whichever shooter's ball comes to rest closest to the bottom rail gets to choose who breaks the rack. It is permissible but not required for the lagged ball to touch or rebound from the bottom rail, but not to touch the side rails. Lagging is usually a two-party activity, though there are games such as cutthroat in which three players might lag. In the case of a tie, the tying shooters re-lag. The lag is most often used in tournament play or other competitions. In hard-break games like nine-ball and eight-ball the winner of the lag would normally take the break, while in soft-break games like straight pool would likely require the loser of the lag to break, since breaking would be a disadvantage.
The use of the correct amount of cue ball speed in position play to achieve proper shape for a subsequent shot.
A predetermined, fixed number of games players must win to win a match; "a race to seven" means whomever wins seven games first wins the match.
An imaginary line dividing the table into two equal halves lengthwise. It intersects the head string, center string and foot string at the head spot, center spot and foot spot, respectively.
Also known as a "power draw", means applying very powerful draw on the cue ball thereby causing the maximum amount of draw.
A foul where the rules are blatantly, intentionally violated, with a stiffer penalty (e.g., loss of game) than normal.
When you have completed a shot by pocketing a ball into a pocket.
This refers to a shot that travels on a shallower path due to the english placed on it. This is to come up on the near side of a pocket on a bank shot.
In eight-ball and related games, describes the situation in which neither player has yet claimed a suit (group) of balls. Often shortened to simply open: "Is it still an open table?" "Yes, it's open."
The International Pool Tour is a professional sports tour created in 2005 by Kevin Trudeau and hosted by Rebecca Grant. It aims to elevate pool (pocket billiards) to the level of other modern sports.
This is when a mistake is made in the shot and the resulting contact between balls forces you to miss the shot.
Chiefly American, and largely obsolete: Same as referee.
Also smalls, small ones, small balls. In eight-ball, to be shooting the solid suit (group) of balls (1 through 7); "you're the small one" or "I've got the smalls". Compare little, solids, reds, low, spots, dots, unders; contrast big.
When a successful non penalized break is achieved which gives the object balls a broad spread on the table.
When a particular ball is given as a handicap in nine-ball, designating that ball in turn means that it must be made in rotation, when it is the lowest numerical ball remaining on the table, and cannot be made to garner a win earlier in the game by way of a combination, carom or any other shot. For example, if a player is spotted the 8 ball, he only wins by making that ball after balls 1 through 7 have been cleared from the table.
This describes balls that are not able to be made in a pocket, either because they are high up on the table, in a different pocket, or in a cluster that makes the shot difficult. This condition of being out of play obviously exists on different difficulty levels.
Pocket openings that are significantly wider than are typical and thus allow shots hit with a poor degree of accuracy to be made that would not be pocketed on a table with more exacting pocket dimensions.
All-Africa Pool Association. The AAPA is a member of the WPA.
This a shot that hits the object ball at the nine ball to see if you can get lucky by sinking the nine ball in any pocket. (also see Cheese the Nine and Rolling the Cheese).
Any mechanical aid that serves to extend the length of the player's cue, normally added to the end of the butt either by clipping around the end or screwing into the base. Though extensions are used for pool, it is more common in snooker because of the significantly larger table size.
In a tournament where players get limited time to make their shots (common in televised matches), an extension is extra time granted before making a shot; players have a limited number of extensions in each frame.
A (principally American) term in eight-ball for either of the set of seven balls (stripes or solids) that must be cleared before sinking the 8 ball. Borrowed from card games. Generally used in the generic, especially in rulesets or articles, rather than colloquially by players. See also group for the British equivalent.
The deciding match between two tied opponents. Compare hill, hill.
Failure to hit an object ball at all with the cue ball. In most sets of rules, this is a foul like any other. However, in some variants of bar pool a table scratch while shooting for the 8 ball is a loss of game where other more minor fouls might not be, as is scratching on the 8 ball (neither result in a loss of game in most professional rules).
By way of drift from the above definition, the term is also applied by many league players to the foul in more standardized rules of failing to drive a (any) ball to a cushion, or to pocket a legal object ball, after the cue ball's initial contact with an object ball.
By way of entirely different derivation ("scratch off the table"), it can also mean knocking the cue ball (or more loosely, any ball) completely off the table.
To contact the chosen object ball in such a way to make it bank off a rail before being pocketed.