Riding the Nine
“…a player jumps to play the nine early and leaves it hanging in the pocket.”
EVERYONE LOVES to combo an early nine ball. It’s nice to get an easy win, but a lot of games are also lost by jarring the nine ball in the pocket. If you decide to shoot a combo, think first about the likely position of the balls in the event that you miss.
For starters, don’t leave the nine ball in front of the pocket where your opponent will have an easy shot at it with the lowest number ball.
To avoid this, consider playing a carom shot off the object ball and into the nine. This will usually leave the cue ball near the nine so that your opponent doesn’t have a direct shot on the combo. Another possibility is to attempt the combo by shooting the object ball rail first. This usually moves the object ball away from the nine, and with the right speed you can also create some distance as insurance.
Early in the game, on a table with clusters, ball–in–hand works great for taking a free shot at the nine ball. Go for it, but always look to keep your opponent hooked.
Avoid scratches, play safe, and protect yourself from giving up a sellout shot.
Early nine ball combos are great, but don’t sell out the farm!
Love our Tip of the Week with Mike Roque, you can purchase your own copy of his book "Build Your Game" at the BEBOB Publishing Website at http://bebobpublishing.com/