Definition of out of play

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.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

This is a type of shot that shows complete control over the object ball and the cue ball.
This is a tip tool for cleaning the edges of you tip after mushrooming occurs.
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.
Same as cue.
A predetermined number of games, usually played for a specified sum of money. Contrast race (a predetermined number of wins). Informally, sets may refer to gambling more generally, as in "I've been playing sets all day", even when the format is actually races or single games.
This is a bank shot that goes off of the head rail and then straight to the pocket at the other end of the table.
A soft joint-like plastic or linen base material. It lets the cue whip, putting more English on the cue ball.
This refers to the cluster of balls remaining in a similar position to where they were within the break
Four-ball is a carom billiards game. The game is played on a pocketless table with four balls, usually one light red, one dark red, and two whites (or just two reds and two whites). Each player is assigned one of the white balls as his own cue ball. A point is scored when a shooter caroms on any two other balls. Two points are scored when the player caroms on each of the three other balls.
This is to miss your shot but either luckily or on purpose leave your opponent with nothing to shoot at.
Chiefly British: Same as shark (senses 1, 2). The term appears in lyrics from The Mikado (1884) in relation to billiards, and developed from sharper (in use by at least 1681, but now obsolete) meaning "hustler" but not specific to billiards.
This is a match where a player must win so many games more than the other player in order to win the match.
Same as foot spot. Chiefly British today, but also an American usage ca. World War I.
This is a handicapping method where one player gets the break, and is allowed to choose any ball afterwards to put in their pocket.
This is the highest number of consecutive points scored during an inning of continuous pool play.
This is a tool that is used to shape a cue stick. It holds the cue in place while rotating it along a cutting edge. This tool can also be used to hold the cue in place while constructing or repairing other parts on the cue.
The person in charge of the game whose primary role is to ensure adherence by both players to the appropriate rules of the game being played. Other duties of the referee include racking each frame, re-spotting balls during the course of a game, maintaining the equipment associated with the table (e.g. keeping the balls clean), controlling the crowd and, if necessary, controlling the players. Formerly sometimes referred to as the umpire.
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.
The precise center of the pool table.
This is a shot on the cue ball that will push through to a frozen ball on the cue ball. If the contact is made on the object ball while the cue stick is still contacting, essentially pushing the second ball, then it is usually considered a foul.
A shot in which the cue ball is struck above its equator with sufficient top spin to cause the cue ball to travel forward after it contacts an object ball. When a cue ball with follow on it contacts an object ball squarely (a center-to-center hit), the cue ball travels directly forward through the space previously occupied by the object ball (and can sometimes even be used to pocket a second ball). By contrast, on a cut shot, a cue ball with follow on it will first travel on the tangent line after striking the object ball, and then arc forward, widening the carom angle.
This is how the player is who is does not break before they get a chance to get out of the break. This time period is when the breaking player with a position advantage on the table.
To bungle a shot in a manner that leaves the table in a fortuitous position for the opponent. Contrast sell the farm.
Hitting the object ball with not enough of a cut angle; hitting the object ball too full or "fat". It is a well-known maxim that overcutting is preferable to undercutting.