Chiefly American: Also known as side spin, english (which is usually not capitalized) is spin placed on the cue ball when hit with the cue tip to the left or right of the ball's center. English has a marked effect on cue ball rebound angle off cushions (though not off object balls), and is thus crucial for gaining shape; and can be used to "throw" an object ball slightly off its otherwise expected trajectory, to cheat the pocket, and for other effects. "English" is sometimes used more inclusively, to colloquially also refer to follow and draw. In combination one could say bottom-right english, or like the face of a clock (4 o'clock english). The British and Irish do not use this term, instead preferring "side".
24 Random Essential Billiards Terms
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.
Modification of the rules and/or scoring of a game to enable players of variable abilities to compete on a more even playing field. Examples of handicapping include spotting balls and giving games on the wire to an opponent. In league play, other forms of handicapping include awarding compensating points to a lesser-skilled team, or using numerical player ranking systems to adjust final scores between opponents of different skill levels.
When the tip of the cue begins to hang over the sides of the ferrule from constant use. This is the action of mushrooming, and it is important to use a tip tool to reshape the tip to fit the ferrule.
A style of game play in which as many players are allowed to join as the participants choose, and anyone can quit at any time. The term, most often used in the context of gambling, is borrowed from poker. The folk games three-ball and killer are usually played as open ring games, as is Kelly pool.
By extension, a multi-player game that anyone may initially join, but which has a fixed roster of competitors once it begins, is sometimes also called a ring game. Cutthroat is, by its nature, such a game. A famous regular ring game event of this sort is the Grady Mathews-hosted six-player, $3000-buy-in ring ten-ball competition at the annual Derby City Classic.
A nine-ball ring game is played by more than two players. Safeties are not allowed.
1 - This is a shot in snooker where the cue ball follows a struck object into the pocket.
This is the male end of the joint located at the base of the shaft. This threaded piece, usually made of metal, connects the shaft with the forearm. The length, width, pitch and depth of threading of the pins vary from joint to joint, but most offer you a flat-faced wood-to-wood connection with the collar. This type of connection will deliver a softer hit. For a harder hit, some pins have a protruding tip without threads that directs the shaft concentrically with a pin that is buried in the collar at the joint. If you want to keep the pin of your shaft safe when your cue is dismantled, it is easy and important to use a joint protector that simply screws over your pin.
Also piquet. Either a massé shot with no english, or a shot in which the cue stick is steeply angled, but not held quite as vertical as it is in full massé.
The use of the correct amount of cue ball speed in position play to achieve proper shape for a subsequent shot.
A cue made specificaly for an individual player. The term may also describe a quality product of a low volume yielding cue maker who puts more time and effort into both the design and structural integrity of the cue stick, as opposed to a cue manufacturer that builds their cues in a more assembly line fashion.
This is a type of shot that is executed by an object ball caroming off of another object ball in order to gain the pocket.
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A type of nurse used in carom billiards games. With one object ball frozen to a cushion and the second object ball just slightly away from the rail, the cue ball is gently rebounded across the face of both balls, freezing the away ball to the rail and moving the frozen ball away the same distance its partner was previously, resulting in an identical but reversed configuration, in position to be struck again by the cue ball from the opposite side.
This is to take all the money from a player or to have lost all of your own money.
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.
This is a term used more in snooker to refer to a follow shot, when the cue ball is hit above center to allow it to follow the object ball after impact.
When the rules of the opening break are broken. Ex: If not enough balls contact with rails off the break.
The placement of player(s) automatically in a tournament where some have to qualify, or automatic placement in later rounds.
Also known as a Dead cushion. A cushion that has either lost a degree of elastic resiliency or is not firmly bolted to the frame, in both cases causing balls to rebound with less energy than is normal.
As an adjective or compound noun: push-out. A rule in many games (most notably nine-ball, after and only after the break shot), allowing a player to "push out" the cue ball to a new position without having to contact any ball, much less pocket one or drive it to a cushion, but not counting any pocketed ball as valid (other foul rules apply, such as double hits, scratching the cue ball, etc.), with the caveat that the opponent may shoot from the new cue ball position or give the shot back to the pusher who must shoot from the new position. In nine-ball particularly, and derived games such as seven-ball and ten-ball, pocketing the money ball on a push-out results in that ball being respotted (which can be used to strategic advantage in certain circumstances, such as when the break leaves no shot on the ball-on, and failure to hit it would give the incoming player an instant-win combination shot on the money ball).
Slang for a mechanical bridge.
Same as duck. Derives from an easily shot ball "hanging" in the pocket.
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Linen made from flax and produced in Ireland which is often used to wrap the gripping area of the butt of a cue.
This is a term used in slang to reference the bridge tool.
Principally British: In snooker, if a player wins all of the required frames in a match without conceding a frame to their opponent - for example, if a player wins a best-of-nine-frame match with a score of 5-0 - this is referred to as a "whitewash". This term is based on a similar term used in the card game of "patience" in the UK. However, it is not used in the context of a 1-0 winning scoreline in a match consisting of a single frame.
Short for right english (side), i.e. side spin imparted to the cue ball by stroking it to the right-hand side of its vertical axis. Contrast left.
A thin sheet of rigid material in the size and shape of a physical ball rack (e.g. a diamond for nine-ball), with holes drilled though it, which is used to make permanent divots in the cloth of the table, one at a time for each ball in the racking pattern, by placing a ball in one of the holes in the carefully placed template and tapping it sharply from above to create the cloth indentation. The holes are spaced slightly closer than the regulation ball width of 21/2 inch (57.15 mm) apart, so that when the balls settle partially into their divots, the outer sides of these indentations create ball-on-ball pressure, pushing the balls together tightly. The purpose of the template is to do away with using a physical rack, with racking instead being performed simply by placing the balls into position, and the divots aligning them into the tightest possible formation automatically. This prevents accidental loose racks, and also thwarts the possibility of cheating by carefully manipulating the ball positions while racking. The European Pocket Billiard Federation (EPBF, Europe's WPA affiliate organization) has adopted this racking technique for its professional Euro-Tour event series.