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  • Adapting to different Playing conditions

    I always find it difficult to get going when playing on different tables. Some of the table playing surfaces are very quick some are slow while some really slowwwww. I was at the SWSA academy yesterday playing in a handicap event and found it difficult to adapt my game to the playing conditions (star tables). I am decent player and can hit the odd 50+ break. However, yesterday I found myself missing mid range shots and falling out of position. I then began changing my technique and started to loosen my grip, draw back / CB striking position and started to float the ball in. It worked for a moment or two but then my game / safety play / long range was all in tatters. I lost confidence in my game and felt it very much displaced. I know I shouldn't be changing my technique as this should remain consistent throughout. Any advice on how to cope with different playing conditions? Do you change your style of play? Is it just a case of getting used to the tables? Or do I stick with one playing surface to keep my game consistent? Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Conditions will always be different at different venues but I would say the SWSA probably has some of the best conditions around. our best bet is to play and practice in as many different venues as you can find. Join a league and also play in as many tournaments as you can.

    Do not change your technique during a match.
    Terry Davidson
    IBSF Master Coach & Examiner

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    • #3
      50 break standard is an average club player...you went onto a pro table and got found out. Happens to a lot better players than you so don't worry about it.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
        50 break standard is an average club player...you went onto a pro table and got found out. Happens to a lot better players than you so don't worry about it.
        50 break standard I would say isn't average club player, average club player is probably a regular 20-30 breaker.
        **** sakes Williams beat's pro's making regular 30-40 breaks so not everyone can expect that if your not a century break man then your a numpty he can obviously play a bit.

        My advice is to accomodate yourself to playing on higher quality tables such as the conditions at SWSA.
        A good player will always want a fast table as snooker should be all simple little stun and screw shots to hit the highest breaks most consistently if your used to playing with lot of top and screw and side on slower club tables you will 'get found out' as dcrackers147 says on a star or aristocrat table cos your biggest asset on those tables is a lazer like straight cue action and nice stun touch around the balls. Big movement shots like mega follow through, screw or use of side requires excellent striking on a fast match cloth and this is probably where your confidence eroded as any small element of off centre striking will be magnified on a match cloth.

        Work on your close control game on these tables that is the key, stay off **** slow tables you'll butcher shots and get into the habit of hitting the ball far too hard when you try to go on a real table you'll overun and underhit everything.
        Last edited by Derek P; 15th January 2018, 04:04 PM.

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        • #5
          Williams made back to back 147's against Duane Jones in practice last week and is an all time great...slight difference. Agree though close control and not letting the white ball get away from you is key. Also going into the pack is far more about penetration than power as the balls open really nicely.
          Last edited by dcrackers147; 15th January 2018, 04:07 PM.

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          • #6
            As Terry touched on, just practice on as many different tables as you can. I actually find the Stars at SWSA to be quite generous compared to what i'm used to.
            "just tap it in"

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            • #7
              what are you used to? I still say as a rule of thumb I find the aristocrats to play slightly tighter than the Star tables. Both however a lot tighter than 99% of club tables.

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              • #8
                SWSA has shimmed pockets on their stars compared to regulation stars, they are definitely a little easier to play on.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
                  what are you used to? I still say as a rule of thumb I find the aristocrats to play slightly tighter than the Star tables. Both however a lot tighter than 99% of club tables.
                  Sorry I could have elaborated on that (I blame my customers wanting me to do some work!). I've played on a couple of Star's at our local club, Chris Wakelin's is crazy tight along the black cushion and when Matt Selt had his table in our club he had it made incredibly tight, apparently it'd help his game doing that.

                  I think the Star's at SWSA are generous compared to these two that i've practiced on.
                  "just tap it in"

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
                    Williams made back to back 147's against Duane Jones in practice last week and is an all time great...slight difference. Agree though close control and not letting the white ball get away from you is key. Also going into the pack is far more about penetration than power as the balls open really nicely.
                    Of course he's amazing but my point was he goes into matches and takes people apart scoring 30-40 and playing telling safety's I know he's a firm member of the hundred break club but he's able to win frames scoring 30-40 too so my point is then that average 50 breaker in the club could win world snooker events and that's just not the case guys down the club will on an average frame go in and make 20 not 50 maybe run fifty once a week or something like that but regular 50 breaker in matches could win the world title Cao Yaopeng was taking robertson apart in glasgow with a fifty in every frame before it got too much for him.

                    Also point on williams making back to back max's in practice I've heard this story from all the pro's and it's relative in the match arena it's harder circumstances and conditions to do that on the line up I can clear in 10 minutes every time but I don't clear the table every frame i play it's all relative to the pressure your opponent is putting you under and at their level that can be incredible

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tomwalker147 View Post
                      Sorry I could have elaborated on that (I blame my customers wanting me to do some work!). I've played on a couple of Star's at our local club, Chris Wakelin's is crazy tight along the black cushion and when Matt Selt had his table in our club he had it made incredibly tight, apparently it'd help his game doing that.

                      I think the Star's at SWSA are generous compared to these two that i've practiced on.
                      haha don't they know it's "Blue Monday!" Never understood the theory of some pros having their tables tighter than match conditions. All it does is limit them in terms of how they can approach a break. For example on a normal Star you don't mind dropping a red along the cushion provided you hit it right at an acceptable pace it's going in. I have played on tables where you hit it as good as you can and it just doesn't go in. This does nothing for your confidence and encourages you to play the wrong positional shot simply to avoid the tables flaws.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
                        haha don't they know it's "Blue Monday!" Never understood the theory of some pros having their tables tighter than match conditions. All it does is limit them in terms of how they can approach a break. For example on a normal Star you don't mind dropping a red along the cushion provided you hit it right at an acceptable pace it's going in. I have played on tables where you hit it as good as you can and it just doesn't go in. This does nothing for your confidence and encourages you to play the wrong positional shot simply to avoid the tables flaws.
                        Totally agree mate! MY friend and I are both centruy breakers and no word of a lie we couldn't get one ball to drop along the black cushion unless we played it dead weight.
                        That's why the SWSA tables were almost a relief after playing on those tight things!
                        "just tap it in"

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by tomwalker147 View Post
                          Totally agree mate! MY friend and I are both centruy breakers and no word of a lie we couldn't get one ball to drop along the black cushion unless we played it dead weight.
                          That's why the SWSA tables were almost a relief after playing on those tight things!
                          it's worse when you enter a comp and you get drawn on a rug with buckets for pockets. Guys twitching in balls down the rail all day long none of which should go in. I have actually apologised for potting balls on some of them haha

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
                            it's worse when you enter a comp and you get drawn on a rug with buckets for pockets. Guys twitching in balls down the rail all day long none of which should go in. I have actually apologised for potting balls on some of them haha
                            I remember playing in a handicap comp on a table with huge pockets and a slow cloth. Thumped the balls round the table and ended up having 80 odd to win a match 3-2, I apologised all the way through the break must've potted half a dozen balls that never should've gone in haha
                            "just tap it in"

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by dcrackers147 View Post
                              haha don't they know it's "Blue Monday!" Never understood the theory of some pros having their tables tighter than match conditions. All it does is limit them in terms of how they can approach a break. For example on a normal Star you don't mind dropping a red along the cushion provided you hit it right at an acceptable pace it's going in. I have played on tables where you hit it as good as you can and it just doesn't go in. This does nothing for your confidence and encourages you to play the wrong positional shot simply to avoid the tables flaws.

                              I would have to disagree. It nearly always comes down to accuracy. Tight pockets will demand more precise potting. There isn't a table in the land that won't accept a ball if struck to go in that exact position. In Jamie Cope's local club there is his star hybrid table and 4 other refurbished tables. That had steel block cushions fitted. They are actually a lot tighter than the star. More or less straight away you will notice this when playing along the cushion. Not too much longer after that, you notice that the reason is because you're not potting with enough accuracy. Tight tables keep your precision. Generous pockets erode it.
                              Last edited by inevermissblue; 15th January 2018, 07:37 PM.
                              Cheap and Cheerful! 😄

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