Definition of top rail

Chiefly British: The rail at the Top of the table. Compare foot rail; contrast Bottom rail.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

This is an object sometimes placed underneath the cue tip.
A tactic employed in UK eight-ball pool in which a player calls and pots one of the balls in a favorably lying set, then plays safe, leaving as many of his/her well-placed balls on the table as possible, until the opponents commits a foul or leaves a chance that the player feels warrants an attempt at running out.
Also known as Free-stroking. This is slang for when a player begins to play untroubled and relaxed because they have built up a substantial lead.
Also yellow(s).
In snooker, the lowest-value colour ball on the table, being worth two points. It is one of the baulk colours.
In blackball, one of two groups of seven object balls that must be potted before the eight ball; compare stripes; contrast red ball.
This is to use running english or soft speed in order to open up the angle on a particular bank shot.
This is a shot where the cue ball contacts an object ball and moves it along a path, but because the cue ball is still in motion it re-contacts the object ball and pushes it in the pocket after it stops.
Also sidespin, side-spin, side. spin placed on the cue ball when hit with the cue tip to the left or right of the ball's center; usually called english in American usage. See english, in its narrower definition, for details on the effects of side spin.
Sometimes called spots and stripes, stripes and solids or, more rarely, bigs and littles or highs and lows.
All fifteen numbered balls are used in a conventional triangle rack.
Each player is assigned either the solid balls (1-7) or the striped balls (9-15). The object is to pocket all of your assigned balls and then pocket the 8-ball.
This is a term to describe 100 break points in a game of snooker.
A shot where the cue ball has no top spin or back spin on it when it impacts an object ball, and "stuns" out along the tangent line. Commonly shortened to just "stun."
In snooker, the highest-value colour ball on the table, being worth seven points. In some (especially American) snooker ball sets it is numbered "7" on its surface.
The black ball (usually numbered "8") in the eight-ball variant game blackball (and its variants); also the common British term for the slightly larger but otherwise identical 8 ball in a kelly pool set (a.k.a. American or WPA pool set).
A British term describing when a ball is tight on the cushion and a player sends the cue ball to hit both the object ball and the rail at nearly the same time; the object ball, ideally, stays tight to the rail and is thus "velcroed" to the rail. Inside english is often employed to achieve this effect, hitting slightly before the ball. The movement of a ball just next to the rail (but not the shot described to achieve this movement) is called hugging the rail in both the UK and the US.
One of the alternating turns players (or doubles teams) are allowed at the table, before a shot is played that concedes a visit to his/her opponent (e.g. "he ran out in one visit"). Usually synonymous with inning as applied to a single player/team, except in scotch doubles format.
A rare and extremely difficult trick jump shot that turns into a massé upon landing. Requires very precise application of spin in addition to the precise application of ball pressure to effectuate the jump. Turn-of-the-20th-century World Balkline Champion Jacob Schaefer Sr. was known to daringly perform jump massés in competition.
This is a ball that is positioned near your pocket that can be used to kiss off of when sinking another object ball.
Also lows, low, low ones. In eight-ball, to be shooting the solid suit (group) of balls (1 through 7); "you're low, remember", "you're low balls" or "I've got the lows." Compare solids, reds, little, spots, dots, unders; contrast high.
The normal phenomenon where the object ball is pushed in a direction very slightly off the pure contact angle between the two balls. Caused by the friction imparted by the first ball sliding past or rotating against the other ball.
This refers to a ball that is positioned close to a rail, offering a shot where the cue must hit the rail and the ball almost simultaneously, this position can also offer a defensive shot where the cue ball can be hidden between that object ball and the rail.
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.
When two objects balls are lined up so that you aim to pocket the nearest object ball, the second object ball will pocket. "That was an easy combination shot, the six ball was wired to the four ball". Also wired combination/combo, wired kiss.
Describing a ball that is safe because it is in close proximity to one or more other balls, and would need to be developed before it becomes pottable.
This is to lay down the money on the table in a betting game before play begins to ensure pay up at the end.
Technique using different wood inlays to create picture designs on the butt of the cue.
Linen made from flax and produced in Ireland which is often used to wrap the gripping area of the butt of a cue.