English Amateur Billiards Association

EABA : The Billiard Monthly : December, 1910

The Billiard Monthly : December, 1910

Billiards and the Ball Returner

It is a little singular that, in the demonstrations of
losing hazard sequences that are being given by George
Gray, the ball-returning device is not fitted to the match
table. The red ball is so seldom pocketed in the course of
a “Gray” session that there is really little for the “spot
boy” to do beyond trundling the cue ball back to baulk,
which the patent ball returner would do automatically in
two seconds from any pocket. There would seem to be
the more reason for the use of this device, inasmuch as
the great bulk of the strokes are made into the middle
pockets, or at a considerable distance from where the spot
boy is standing, and the continual gyrations of this young
gentleman around the whole of the top half of the table
have already afforded subject for the humorous efforts
of caricaturists in various newspapers.

If the ball returner would be useful during such demonstrations
as those of Gray—besides adding interest and
promoting more rapid sequences—it should prove simply
invaluable to the hundreds of amateurs possessing billiard
tables who are now sedulously practising the middle-pocket
shot in private, but who have to walk half-way up the
table between each stroke. This is inconvenient, besides
being disturbing to the eye, which has little chance of
becoming trained to the microscopically exact line of aim
that is essential if the object ball is to be directed towards
a given spot on the top cushion.

One thing is tolerably certain. Anyone who has been
accustomed to use a ball returner in private practice would
not like to be without it.

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