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View Full Version : Hill - Hill should go.



Popcorn
07-17-2004, 09:35 AM
I believe the hill-hill game has no place in professional pool. If a match reaches that point, it is in fact a tie regardless who won the last game and the hill-hill game becomes a sudden death game with the breaker having a decided advantage. I would prefer to see a win by two rule put in place for pros. I have played in tournaments with that rule and it made for some very exciting matches. At the very least, once hill-hill all is even and the last game should be lagged for and the game should not be able to be won on the break. Time should not really be an issue since it doesn't happen every match and these extra inning type of matches would really appeal to the spectators. You could put a cap on it at a point also. This is just off the top off my head, I am sure there are other changes that would not really impact the play of the game, but could raise the level of the professional nature of it. As it is now, the rules the pros play by are almost childish. I think some of the rules they play by hold the game back from being a world class game. How can the game be world class, when you have pros playing by school yard rules. Just my opinion

recoveryjones
07-17-2004, 10:25 AM
Personally, I like hill-hill format as having played in them(and watched) I find them very exciting.I really like that feeling of, "Holy $hit, this is it!" I would think that it is THE RUSH, that many other pool players also love to experience.

Sure the breaker has the decided advantage going into the hill-hill game, however, both players start the match exactly even.I seem to remember reading somewhere(Capelle book???) that the pros (on average) only break and run 28% of the time.If this is true, they only stand slightly better than a 1 in 4 chance of ending the game anyways. With the added pressure of it being such a crucial game I suspect those stats are even lower.

Johnny Archer was down 10-7 in his match today and roared back to make it 10-10. He had the break advantage and came up dry.I'm sure that was a very exciting match to be a spectator of.I'm sure the fans in Taipai found todays 3 hill-hill battles very exciting and it was a day that they will remember for sure.I say leave hill-hill in the game.RJ

Popcorn
07-17-2004, 10:39 AM
Not if you are the player. You play almost a perfect match to lose because the guy makes the last nine on the break. It is far more exciting watching to top players exchange the lead in a win by two match and have one finally end it. I watched Sigel and Hall play one like that and it went to 21 to 19. The crowd looked like they needed oxygen as did the players the excitement level was so high. Even in base ball, in extra innings the team that is on the bottom has a chance to come to bat to tie it up or win, it is not sudden death. When two players play their heart out, it just should not end hill - hill with a nine on the break, it is justnot professional in my opinion.

recoveryjones
07-17-2004, 11:01 AM
No doubt the nine on the break thing can really suck , especially when it ends a hill-hill match.I agree with you fully on that point.The vast majority of hill-hill games don't end that way, however,unfortunatley that's the cruelty of the game of nine ball.

I once played a 3 hour money match and lost a hill-hill battle when the guy flukes the nine. Yes ,it sucks!!!Maybe a rule should be implemented (in pro matches) that the nine ball should be called.I've also seen tournaments when the nine is respotted when fluked of the break.RJ

Leviathan
07-17-2004, 12:09 PM
I agree that win-by-two is a better test of performance. With win-by-two and alternating breaks you have to break your opponent's serve at least one more time than he or she breaks yours. I'd much rather see a 13-11 match between closely matched players than a hill-hill match that ends before either player establishes significant dominance.

It's a matter of business and a matter of personal experience and taste, I guess. Win-by-one appeals to spectators who get a big bang out of an "everything-on-one-throw" situation. It also appeals to television execs and tournament officials who want matches to fit conveniently into standard time slots. Dinosaurs like me--and probably like you, Popcorn--tend to feel that nothing is really settled until there's a lot of blood in the buckets and one contestant can't answer the bell. We like to feel that a game of pool settles something, and we just don't get that with hill-hill matches.

AS

tateuts
07-17-2004, 12:33 PM
I agree it would be better. The best example is tennis with the "deuce" and "advantage" scoring in sets.

The other possibility is to go to a tie-breaker similar to tennis, where any hill-hill match then goes to an alternate break, win by two format.

Chris

recoveryjones
07-17-2004, 01:12 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr> I agree it would be better. The best example is tennis with the "deuce" and "advantage" scoring in sets.

The other possibility is to go to a tie-breaker similar to tennis, where any hill-hill match then goes to an alternate break, win by two format.

Chris
<hr /></blockquote>

If you are going to get into this win by two stuff,(and compare it to tennis) I think the only way to fairly implement/compliment it would be to go to an alternate break system as you've mentioned.This winner break system can be really disheartning.If a person can take a game on the other guys break,(tennis format) he has truly broken his break.Nine ball is a game that requires many different skills and unfortunatley the dominance of a great break has taken over the game

Nine ball breaks, flukes, and winner break rules can ultimatley put a player out of a tournament.

Take the case of Hohmann who lost 9-1 to Kang. Hohmann apparently watched helplessly as Kang ran rack after rack and only got to the table to kick at a few safetys.Did he play bad.....NO....he barely got to play.An alternate break system could have turned this into a much more competitve match where the player with the best skills has a better chance.

In summary if you beat a person by two games....YES, you have convincingly beat him and that more truly defines the winner, I would have to agree.Having said that I still find that hill-hill matches can be exciting.

I've never witnessed a win by two match like the 21-19 explained by Popcorn between Hall and Segal. If I did, then maybe I'd change my tune.RJ.

Keith Talent
07-17-2004, 01:13 PM
I agree absolutely, Popcorn.

As in tennis, the pressure and the excitement would continue to build as players know they MUST either hold serve, so to speak, or win on their opponent's break, to stay in the match. For sure nobody was bored when Andy Roddick won 21-19 in the fifth set at an Australian Open match the year before last.

But these things rarely go on so long ... somebody usually makes the fatal error after a few games, but that's more fair than losing while glued to your seat.

dg-in-centralpa
07-17-2004, 01:20 PM
Interesting proposition. I agree that winning by two would make the match more exciting. On the other hand it can throw off a whole schedule of times for matches.

DG - would probably prefer winning by two

BCgirl
07-17-2004, 02:30 PM
I think that's a little bit like saying that, in an Olympic 100m race, if the two runners are less than a metre apart when they cross the line, the guy that crosses the line first wasn't really any faster, so they have to keep on going. Better still, guys, our new Sekonda timing gear's broken, so just stop right there and we'll toss a coin to see who was faster, OK? What do you mean, you were ahead by an arm, that's a head on that coin there, and it doesn't lie. OK, OK, can't have any crying in front of all these people. If it makes you happy, we'll get out the magic 8-ball. Deal?

A race to 11 in 9-ball is a sprint match. Forcing a one-game play-off is just silly. Enforcing a two-game winning margin would take away a lot of the drama, and it would sure impact the play of the game, but it wouldn't make any other significant difference.

It's certainly heartbreaking to lose on the hill to a 9 on the break, but the best answer to that is called-pocket on the 9, and/or to spot the 9 at the end of a legal run. If you make the 9 on the break, you run to the 8 to win. If you don't run out, the 9 ball gets spotted.

I don't really know what rules you might consider juvenile. I've certainly seen plenty of juvenile behaviour in players questioning rules, and top-level tournament directors abusing or mis-calling rules, but a professional player will roll with the blows so long as the rules are reasonable and the table is level for all players.

BCgirl

Tom_In_Cincy
07-17-2004, 02:32 PM
Winning by two is interesting.

Seven ahead would be more decisive for who is the better player. IMO.

Interesting time constaints for any type of tournament.

If the race was 9, and the score was 8-8, and the 'two ahead' took another 6 games (winner would have 12-loser-10) making the additional games played total 22, would that really indicate who was the better player? IMO, NO.

Between two equally sklled players, it's usually who is playing better at the moment.

Otherwise, only the best player would win all the tournaments.

When was the last time a PRO won 4 tournaments in a row?

JDB
07-18-2004, 12:47 AM
I agree, I think hill-hill is a tie. I definitely agree that you should have to win by two... It would make for a much better match in my opinion...

mudball
07-18-2004, 02:52 AM
In most cases the hill-hill could have been avoided by both players /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

cheesemouse
07-18-2004, 05:25 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote mudball:</font><hr> In most cases the hill-hill could have been avoided by both players /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif <hr /></blockquote>


<font color="red"> BINGO.... <font color="blue"> </font color>tap tap tap </font color>

Rich R.
07-18-2004, 06:12 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> Even in base ball, in extra innings the team that is on the bottom has a chance to come to bat to tie it up or win, it is not sudden death. <hr /></blockquote>
I have to dispute this point. In baseball, if the home team scores the go ahead run, in an extra inning game, it is sudden death and the teams walk off the field. It is only when the visiting team goes ahead, that the home team gets a chance to come back.
I don't thing you can apply the home and away concept to international pool players, especially when a final match is between two players from countries different from the site of the tournament. /ccboard/images/graemlins/confused.gif

I also have to dispute the point of lagging for the final break in a hill-hill match. Isn't the privilege of breaking in that last game, what a player really wins, in the initial lag? What major significance would the opening lag have, if players are going to lag again for the final game?

I also believe this "win by 2" concept could be a scheduling nightmare for tournament directors. Although I agree that every match does not go to hill-hill, all you would need is one particularly long match, in early rounds, to screw up the schedule for the rest of the day. Add the fact that slow play, by some players, can already mess up a schedule, you could prolong a tournament schedule by many hours.
I won't even discuss what this concept would do the existing problems with getting TV coverage of tournaments. As it is, viewers do not get to see every game of a simple race to 7. /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

pooltchr
07-19-2004, 06:32 AM
Popcorn,
Just a couple of points here.
1. In an alternating break format, the person who won the lag at the beginning of the match will be the breaker on the hill-hill game. He already won, so no need to lag again.
2. The baseball analogy isn't the same. Baseball is played until the last inning is complete. Pool doesn't care about innings (except the APA), it's just who gets there first. (note: they do call it a RACE to whatever)

If I get there first, I win.
Just my thoughts on the subject.

Leviathan
07-19-2004, 07:17 AM
'Lo, Teacher: I think the point of the analogy with baseball is that each team gets the same number of innings at bat in baseball. In a hill-hill pool match with alternating breaks, the player who breaks first also breaks last and thus has one more break than his or her opponent.--AS

rah
07-19-2004, 10:06 AM
If you are looking for skill to end the game, then why have short races to 7 anyway? Races to 9 are a good test, and to 12 or what ever are even better. Then, since you would be essentially having the test being proven by long races, it should be like football IMO where the first one to score wins. You could also add a few more variables into the game to make it interesting as I saw in the ledgends of pool matches: you must pick the side where you must make the 9 ball.

To go off on a tangent, Bobby Fischer in chess wanted to spice up the game by having the computer randomly pick the way the pieces are placed on the last row of each opponent. How about making the tie breaker a 10 ball game, where it is harder to run out, and the 10 ball if made on the break is spotted.

Winning by two is nice in private matches, but I don't believe it has a place on TV or even in regular tournaments where time is a factor.

So, having said that having to win by winning more games is ideal, it also boggs down the TV a little. Winning by 2 is also out. I believe that modifying the final game a little would be most favorable. How about a game of 8 ball? Then you would see some real stategy and excitement. But please, please, please, not one pocket LOL.

eg8r
07-19-2004, 10:21 AM
[ QUOTE ]
'Lo, Teacher: I think the point of the analogy with baseball is that each team gets the same number of innings at bat in baseball. In a hill-hill pool match with alternating breaks, the player who breaks first also breaks last and thus has one more break than his or her opponent.--AS <hr /></blockquote> This is even further proof that there absolutely zero reason to refer to baseball. In pool, the "other team" may never have a chance at the proverbial "at bat" (unless you are playing alternating breaks). The guy who wins the lag always has the opportunity to break and run out the set.

Baseball is a very poor sport to try and compare to pool.

eg8r