A Few Cue Tips (Second Instalment)
When you really do not know what to do, or a score is
extremely unlikely, play for safety if you know how.
The point of aim in screw and tight cushion kiss strokes
is where two lines at equal angle converge from the cue
ball to the objective.
In making those little”screw losers into blind pockets,
the contact should be as fine as the stroke allows, otherwise
the side is killed.
You are almost sure to play run throughs too fine and
fine strokes (especially fast ones) too full. Try a little
exaggeration on the other side.
Don’t make a longer range stroke when a gentle fine
cannon will leave you another and simpler stroke. This
especially applies to top-of-table play.
To avoid that annoying kiss when balls are in position
near side top cushion for quarter-ball cannon from baulk,
use slow running instead of check side, aiming half-ball.
Often you may think you have played too full when you
have really slightly stunned the ball. The sound of the
contact should guide you as well as the slightly increased
deadness of the cue ball in its run.
If your opponent’s ball is tucked under a cushion, choose
a pocket (if on) rather than disturb the white, unless you
can see clear position ahead. The cannon might be your
last stroke, whereas the in-off might lead to several.
To avoid that kiss off the side cushion when playing fast
for cannons off the top cushion, aim finer with a little
running side, This clears the object ball out of the way,
and makes it follow, instead of intercept, the cue ball.
When the three balls are in line at right angles, or
nearly so, with a cushion, and the object balls are near such
cushion, a kiss cannon is difficult to miss if aim be taken
full or less, according to the angle of the lie with the
Disregard the edge of the object ball in aiming in fine
strokes and concentrate the aim on a portion of the cloth
¼, ½, ¾, or 1 in. away from the edge of your ball, as this
is the spot over which the centre of the cue ball must
When the white is in the jaws of a top or middle pocket
and the red on the spot, don’t make the cannon, even if
nicely on. Drop the white gently in and continue off the
red ball. You have got to lose the white in any case, and
may as well know what is to follow.
In playing to pocket by (Striking a cushion first, aim at
a point the same distance outside the edge of the cushion
as the centre of the object ball is away from such cushion.
Ignore the cushion and aim for this point on or outside
the rail, using pocket side.
When the object and cannon balls lie near each other
against a cushion with the cue ball at a fairly acute angle
behind them, aim dead centre with running side, and the
cannon is certain. With the red as cannon ball an almost
certain pot or in-off is also left to follow with.
In playing cushion cannons, take the angle from the
part of the cannon (or second) ball that you desire to
strike Cut beyond the cushion until it meets a similarly
angled line from the inside of the object ball. Then play
the stroke as though the cannon were at the intersection
of these lines.
When the lie of the object balls is favourable for a drop
or other cannon from baulk, but the player’s ball is not in
hand, an obvious thing to do is to make a gentle grazing
contact loser (if such be on), thus achieving the desired
position. Or a cannon not nicely on from baulk can often
be made so in similar way by slightly thicker contact.