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Thread: Speed of play - Fluency vs Deliberate

  1. #1
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    Default Speed of play - Fluency vs Deliberate

    In the past I've been pretty quick round the table, feathering only a little and reading shots and the game quickly.

    However since I've came back and I'm probably more conscious of what I'm doing technically but also maybe a little older/wiser I seem to have a more deliberate rhythm around the table.

    I feel more in line with the way John Higgins/Neil Robertson approach a shot vs the fluency of someone like an early Hendry, White or O'sullivan. I feel I'm not talented enough to play like that and I occasionally miss easy balls or lose the buzz of the break if I have to think about something complicated like a cannon or 2 cushions etc.

    So this got me thinking how do others find their pace round the table?
    And what works for you and what doesnt?

    I seem to be more consistent playing at the higgins/robertson type speed I feel it's the best of both worlds for a little bit of fluency and just enough deliberation to make sure you give each shot the proper respect.

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    I feel that I am deliberate around the table at the start of the session, then become more fluent as I get the arm going and eyes-tuned-in, etc
    and the ultimate is when you are not thinking about anything at all - "the zone" - fleeting but oh so nice
    then it is back to deliberate to get the fluency going again
    What I find hardest is 1) how to reduce the deliberate time and 2) how to get to and stay in the zone, and what turns it off?

    Not that I think much about this at all when at the table, but the thoughts do creep in
    Up the TSF!

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    spot on - you have to play yourself into that "zone" feeling when everything is automatic. No matter how fluent you play a pre shot routine is key - also during breaks you normally have those key shots which require a little more effort to make the rest of the break plain sailing. Once you can recognise theses shots and give your ability a chance you will see big improvements. It is important to play at your natural speed though as long as it's controlled. If you deliberately slow yourself down you end up putting too much into each shot and lose the white as a result.

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    I tend to talk myself into playing the wrong shot if I take too much time thinking about it.

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    Firstly, I try to maintain the same walking pace around the table. Relaxed and quick, but not rushing. When I get nervous I tend to rush around the table almost which ends with me feeling out of control, if that makes any sense.

    The rest of my pace is dictated by when I make a decision on the shot selection. After surveying the table, the first shot I see tends to be the right one (or at least the best I'll come up with), just due to experience. So I'll make my mind up and then go through my routine. It's important not to second guess yourself.

    Generally, early in the break I'll take a bit of time as I get into rhythm but as it progresses and I speed up a bit, especially if I've cleared up some problem areas.

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    Usually end up speeding up when i'm playing well and it inevitably ends with me potting a really hard ball with no effort and then missing the next incredibly easy shot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by narl View Post
    Usually end up speeding up when i'm playing well and it inevitably ends with me potting a really hard ball with no effort and then missing the next incredibly easy shot.
    snap

    .....
    Up the TSF!

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    Good question and imo the holy grail of snooker. If you can find a happy medium between both states and channel that as your regular cue action then you'll become a better more consistent player.

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    Tricks to finding happy medium?
    What do people do?

    In solo practice I'm flying with my rhythm obviously it just builds in fluency how do we bring that to the match table consistently?
    I'm only back playing 2 months I'll find if I play a match I'll have my natural fluency and deliberate play at a perfect pace like 50% of the time other times I seem to be struggling to get the fluency bogged down in tight matches.

    In the past I've tried to speed up when a chance comes but that can lead to an easy miss?
    I watch some of the pro's and they must just flick some kind of switch from somewhere if you watched Dott vs Trump the other day he was like a machine when he got a chance the look of pure determination on that guys face if you could muster a few ounces of that during a game you'd blow most amatuers off the table.

    Is it all in the mind?

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    Derek,

    This has actually plagued my game for the last couple of years. I went for some coaching, at the time I was knocking in regular half centuries, hitting the ball well but breaking down too often around the 30/40 mark.
    I asked the coach for some help with concentration. He suggested a routine, we tried it and it worked. Same feathers on each shot, same walk in, same stance etc.
    That season I won our singles competition beating some excellent players in the process. I felt in control but very deliberate. I won the final 3-1 and I think only missed 3 shots in the whole match. I thought i'd cracked the game really.

    The following season my game was a shambles, I found that being deliberate was affecting my natural rhythm. I felt tight and uncomfortable, almost bored of playing deliberately.

    This season however i've made a break through, i'm scoring well and flowing around the table. Absolutely destroying opponents, winning most frames before the final reds have disappeared.
    I put it down to just "getting on with it";
    -I see the shot I want to play
    -Decide where I want the cue ball to finish (and where I need to strike the cue ball)
    -Walk in
    -Play it
    -Stay down on the shot.

    I don't;
    -worry about missing
    -over think things
    -let opponents bother me with their antics
    - think about the intricacies like getting my foot in line, how I grip the cue, how I sight it (that comes with practice and is now the norm)

    It is absolutely a mental thing, in the mind.
    "just tap it in"

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