Definition of reading the stack

This is the act of looking over the stack, pile of balls in the middle of the table, to see if there are any opportunities in the game of one pocket.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

The point in match play where both players (or teams) need only one more game (frame) victory to win the match or race.
New Zealand Billiards and Snooker Association.
Also pro side of the pocket and missing on the professional (or pro) side of the pocket. Sometimes "of the pocket" is left off the phrase. To err on the side of overcutting a difficult corner pocket cut shot rather than undercutting in nine ball; "missing on the professional side of the pocket." So called because experienced players understand that on a thin cut, overcutting the object ball to a corner pocket will far more often leave the object ball in an unfavorable position for the incoming opponent than will an undercut, which often leaves the object ball sitting in front of or nearby the pocket it had been intended for on a miss. By contrast, in eight-ball, except when both players are shooting at the 8 ball, the incoming player after a miss is shooting for different object balls, so this maxim does not apply, and the opposite may be good strategy as, if the object ball stays near the pocket through an undercut, it is advantageously positioned for a subsequent turn and may block the opponent's use of the pocket.
An intentionally amateurish stroke to disguise one's ability to play.
Area on the corner of a carom table, which is defined by a line between the second diamond on the side rail and the first diamond on the end rail, where only three successive points are allowed before the object ball must be cleared out of the area.
Same as centre pocket.
Either of the two longer rails of a billiards or pocket billiards table, bisected by a center pocket and bounded at both ends by a corner pocket. Also called a long rail.
A player who during the course of a tournament does not lose focus. Typically said of those players that regularly make it to the finals of a tournament.
In snooker, a shot where a player fouls by missing the ball on altogether. The miss rule allows for his opponent to have the player play exactly the same shot again, or at least as accurately as the referee is able to reproduce the ball positions. A miss usually occurs when a player makes an unsuccessful attempt at escaping from a snooker. It is a controversial rule aimed at formally discouraging deliberate fouls. In professional snooker, a referee will almost always call a miss on any foul where the player misses the ball on altogether, regardless of how close the player comes to hitting it, however no miss can be called when either of the players requires snookers to win the frame. If a player is called for a miss three times in a single visit while not snookered, he forfeits the frame; to avoid this, players almost always play an easy hit on their third attempt, even if it is likely to leave a chance for the opponent.
This is a blemish added to the table in order to help execute a shot; these marks are not allowed and result in a foul.
Billiard Congress of America. The official governing body for pocket billiards in the United States.
A cluster of balls. In snooker, the bunch of reds that are typically left below the pink spot in the early stages of a frame, not including those reds that have been released into pottable positions.
A form of doubles play in which the two team members take turns, playing alternating shots during an inning (i.e. each team's inning consists of two players' alternating visits, each of one shot only, until that team's inning ends, and the next team begins their alternating-shot turn.) Effective scotch doubles play requires close communication between team partners, especially as to desired cue ball position for the incoming player. Like "english", "scotch" is usually not capitalized in this context. The term is also used in bowling, and may have originated there.
Artistic pool is a trick shot competition, inspired by the related discipline of artistic billiards.
Alternate name for the cue ball.
In carom billiards games, a term for the opponent's cue ball, which for the shooting player is another object ball along with the red.
The United States Snooker Association (USSA) is the internationally recognized governing body of the sport of snooker in the United States. Founded in 1991 by the British-born Michael Collins, the USSA is a member of the International Billiards and Snooker Federation (IBSF), the world governing body of non-professional English billiards and snooker, and is affiliated with the American CueSports Alliance (ACS).
Also on the lemon. Disguising the level of one's ability to play.
When the rules of the opening break are broken. Ex: If not enough balls contact with rails off the break.
Also lady's aid or girly stick. A denigrating term for the mechanical bridge.
Short for top spin, i.e. same as follow.
Chiefly British: The half of the table in which the object balls are racked (in games in which racked balls are used). This usage is conceptually opposite that in North America, where this end of the table is called the foot. In snooker, this is where the reds are racked, nearest the black spot; this is the area in which most of the game is usually played.
Chiefly American: Exactly the opposite of the above - the head end of the table. No longer in common usage.
On two piece cues, the area of the cue between the joint and the wrap.
This describes a shot where you bank the object ball off of a rail and then sink it in a corner pocket.
Feel generally refers to that elusive quality that makes one cue feel special or superior to another. In essence, it is the cumulative effect of all of a cues characteristics, including weight, shaft diameter, balance, grip material, length, etc. It can vary greatly from one player to another. A cue that feels great to one player does not necessarily fell good to another.
An area defined on a billiard table, in games such as pool, snooker, English billiards and bagatelle, by a single balkline (drawn or imaginary) that runs across the table near the head (bottom) end; exactly where depends upon table type and size. This balk is where the cue ball is placed in lagging for lead, for making the opening break shot, and sometimes for other purposes, depending upon the game.