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Rule clarification

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  • Rule clarification

    I've only been playing Billiards for the last 3-4 years now so am still a novice when it comes to understanding all the rules. Tonight I played in an open handicapped knock out tournament and experienced my opponent making a couple of shots, of which I had always understood to be foul shots and would like some clarification on the matter. Before explaining the shots in question the marker/referee agreed with my opponent and the result finished in me only just losing the match. Therefore if the shots in question where foul shots, then I would want to force a rematch.

    Both incidents happened when my opponent had his ball in hand. In the first instance, my ball was only just in play with the vertical centreline of the ball just being inplay by the smallest amount possible. Note that the red ball was in baulk against the baulk cushion. My apponent placed his ball on the baulk line and cannoned off my ball onto the red, which meant that he had to aim his ball into slightly into baulk for achieving the correct point of contact on my ball for making the cannon, (of which he did). I challenged the shot as a foul because the direction of the shot was actually into baulk in order to strike my inplay ball. I was overuled and accepted the situation.

    The second instance involved my ball being in play closely and fully shielding the red ball which was on a side cushion, without them actually being touching balls. Their positions meant it was impossible to aim out of baulk for making a cannon, so therefore my apponent fired his in-hand ball into baulk, aiming onto the baulk cushion and sucessfully made a cannon onto the red from off my ball. I again challenged this shot, believing that he should have aimed out of baulk when in-hand. I was again over ruled on the basis that the two said balls where in play, but I would have been correct had they both been in baulk. In both cases, my apponent went on to making quite good breaks and won the match, albeit by only nine points. As I don't know all the rules thoroughly, I would like to seek claricfication, as I have never witnessed this scenario before and also, if these shots are foul shots, then I want to seek a rematch as I only lost by 9 points and the result might have been different.

    I hope my explanations are clear enough for you more experienced players to comment on. I also hope that I don't sound as if I am a sore loser, but I also wanted clarification because if they are legal shots, then I would find them useful in future matches, as I'm sure others might do so in reading this.

  • #2
    In the first instance, that was a fair shot. It is not necessary for the cue ball to physically cross the baulk line, as long as in hits a ball which is out of baulk. The stipulation is that, from in hand, the cue ball must first make contact with a cushion [out of baulk] or a ball out of baulk before hitting a ball which is in baulk.

    Here's the full text of the rule about playing from in hand:

    6. Playing from In-hand
    To play from in-hand, the cue-ball must be struck from a position on or within the lines of the “D”, and:
    (a) the referee will state, if asked, whether the cue-ball is properly placed (that is, not outside the lines of the “D”);
    (b) if the tip of the cue should touch the cue-ball while positioning it, and the referee is satisfied that the striker was not preparing or attempting to play a stroke, then the cue-ball is not in play;
    (c) the cue-ball must be played out of Baulk. If it contacts an object ball that is out of Baulk, the cue-ball is held to have been played out of Baulk even though it may not physically cross the Baulk-line;
    (d) the cue-ball must contact a cushion or ball out of Baulk before re-entering and coming to rest in Baulk, or before hitting a ball in Baulk;
    (e) the cue-ball may be played against a cushion in Baulk before hitting a ball out of Baulk;
    (f) if an object ball is in Baulk, no part of its surface may be played on directly from in-hand, even if that part of its surface is physically out of Baulk.

    In your second scenario, again I see that as a fair shot, as both object balls were out of baulk. It doesn't matter where you aim, as long as you first hit a cushion our of baulk or a ball out of baulk before hitting a ball which is in baulk. As long as he made contact with one of the object balls then that's a legal shot. Sub-section (e) makes this clear.



    • #3

      Thanks for your reply and am grateful for your explanations which helps clear up this matter. At least I now know for future games and will use to my advantage whenever the need arises. Have copied your info just incase I need to prove the correct rules on this.


      • #4
        Absolutely correct. Both shots executed by your opponent were legal.


        • #5
          Thanks for that, I have only started playing billiards and I thought you had to play up the table with ball in hand.
          This is how you play darts ,MVG two nines in the same match!