View Full Version : trying to make the 9 ball on the break

06-12-2002, 04:03 PM
What is the best way to break to give you the best chance at pocketing the 9 ball on the break? I sometimes see the 9 ball heading toward the right side corner pocket at the foot of the table. The 7 & under tournament has a hot shot pool. The owner picks two people each week. Each one of them getd a chance to break. If they make the 9 ball on the break they win the hot shot pot. I think it was up to $435 last week.

06-12-2002, 04:30 PM
With a tight rack it is just luck. When you see the nine heading straight at the corner pocket. It is usually because one of the two balls behind the nine are not frozen to the nine. The nine comes out of the rack like a trick shot.

Scott Lee
06-12-2002, 04:47 PM
Eddie...Like Q-Guy said, making the 9 on the break is a lucky shot. You should be more concerned with HOW you break. Stroke through the CB dead center, and aim to hit the one-ball head on. The CB should be skidding into the one-ball, with NO spin of any kind. It doesn't matter where you break from. Many pros break nineball from the side, because they can sometimes maniupulate the one-ball into the side pocket, on the break.

Scott Lee

Mike H
06-12-2002, 04:55 PM
What Q-Guy and Scott say about making the 9 with a tight rack being lucky is true. However if the rack is tight, the odds seem to be a little better (if you have a good amount of power in your break) if you place the cue ball halfway between the spot and the rail, hit the 1 ball full, center ball (as Scott described) and absolutely crucify the rack. I don't know what everyone else thinks of this, but it seems to work considerably better than any other break I've tried through the years.

Mike~~~~~~just likes the thud of a hard break :P

06-12-2002, 06:06 PM
Eddie, as mentioned, it is luck. I'd follow Scott's advice on how to break, but add one more ingredient. When you break, whether it be in the tournament or if you get picked for the hot shot. Only break at the speed you can maintain control of the c/b. That means you need to hit the one ball dead square. You transfer "all" of the c/b mass to the rack.
The next time you practice pay attention to speed verses accuracy, and how well the balls separate. You'll get your answer there. I'm not talking about a soft break, just take a little speed off the break so your in control. I never use 100%, there is a little in reserve and that's where it's going to stay, in reserve.

A couple of days ago I was playing in a ring game. Everyone was breaking hard and not making a ball. I took a little speed off my break and made three balls the first rack. Making one or two wasn't a problem. Sometimes depending on the table and conditions a little less speed works much better. The funny part about that game, 2 guys for sure knew I slowed up my speed, but still no one else tried a slower break. Some people are convinced power is the only answer. I took their power to the bank, if you get my drift.
Good Luck Eddie, we all need that element.

06-12-2002, 09:28 PM
I never had a hard break. But I remember breaking from one place, the 1 ball would head towards the side or cross side. And from another place the 9 ball would sort of head towards the corner. It almost never went in. Back in the 60s I would sometimes break from the left side of the table. I would place the cue ball up close to the headstring and a few inches off the side rail. And i would break by stroking the cuestick off the cushion or wood. And sometimes I would place the cue ball a few inches to the right of the center of the table. And I would set it about 6" to 9" from the rear rail. And from this spot I would also stroke the cuestick off the cushion or wood. And sometimes I would place the cue ball a few inches to the right of center table, but up close to the headstring. And from here I would stroke the cuestick through my bridged hand. And then sometimes I would place it close to the headstring except a few inches to the left of center table. I remember once in 69 I played with a school teacher at Northern IL. They just put on new cloths and whenever you hit a ball hard they would slide or skid before they would grip and start rolling. I think even the cue would skid some before it hit any balls if you shot it too hard. I made the 9 ball on the break 3 consecutive times in the right corner pocket. I could barely believe it. I knew it was because of the new cloths. I think I made it a total of 5 to 10 times in that corner pocket. The school teacher also made it about 5 to 10 times in that corner pocket.

I never liked breaking from off the side of the table because if I didn't hit the 1 ball solidly I wouldn't get a good break. And if the front balls were racked loosely I wouldn't get a good break. And one of the biggest things I do wrong is hit too high. The cue will almost always follow through. I think I got that bad habit becasue I never wanted to mark or ruin a cloth. And even when I try hitting center or a little below, I still get that cue follow through after it strikes the 1 ball. I just can't seem to use a low hit on the break like I see many others do. But like I said before, I never had a strong or hard break. It never bothered me much because I'm not a threat to run the rack anyway. And most of the people I played would rarely run a rack against me either.

Cueless Joey
06-12-2002, 09:53 PM
I saw one guy make it twice in a row last night. Guy has a hammer. I move it best when breaking from the left rail and hitting the one ball slightly to the right.
Still, it's only a 3.3% proposition.

Chris Cass
06-12-2002, 09:54 PM
Hi Eddie,

435 bucks ay? If I were you, I would check out what table they usually shoot the hot shot on. Then, go in sometime when it's not tournament night and play some on it. Find out, where the sweet spot is on that particular table. That gets the 9 ball to roll, towards the corner pocket. Not a waste of time, if you get drawn sometime in the future. Another way is to watch and see who's breaking and see the speed of the break, position of the cb and if the 9 is rolling good. JMO



06-12-2002, 10:45 PM
I watched a player that I remembered from Chris's from about 20 years ago. I would guess he is 65 or older. He was a 6 1/2. But now he might have gone above the 7. Anyway I think I mentioned in another post that I saw him make the 9 ball on the break in two consecutive tournaments. Once was in the open handicap. I briefly praised him on having a nice break. He almost alwyas makes 1 or more balls. And I asked if he was using a Predator breaking cue. He said no. It is just an old cheap cue so he doesn't mess up his playing cue on breaks. So he took it out and it was a Player's cue. And it didn't come apart like into 3 sections like jump cues do. So I don't know if it is a break cue or just a regular cue like he stated. He didn't make it to the open handicap tournament on Mon. About 5 of the better players didn't show up. I hope it was due to the terrible rain we had. I was planning on watching where he broke from and then maybe practicing from that spot a little.

The owner always has the hot shot on the 1 table which is right next to his counter. And he racks the balls and checks them closely before he tosses the cue to the player for their attempt. I would feel funny practicing the break there with him watching. But maybe I will.

06-13-2002, 01:12 AM
man I am so glad someone finally said it right q-guy I was starting to wonder if anyone was going to explain 9-ball breaks... on a perfect tight rack the 9 is not supposed to move off of the spot whatsoever it only goes in if one of the balls hits it comming off of a rail.... if you want to make more 9-balls check the rack before you break.. if you break from the left side and there is a gap on the ball just below the 9 on the right side that gives you a good chance if the gap is on the left side break from the right... anyone who says they have made multiple 9's on the break probably got bad racks that had gaps in them

06-13-2002, 01:28 AM
Hi Eddie, the point is where ever you break from, hit the c/b and one ball dead center. You may be dropping your elbow before impact causing the above center hit. It's hard to say without watching. Trying to hit them too hard, no matter what your speed is, can and will cause an off center hit. Hold the cue fairly light and back off speed until you can make a solid hit without english. That is your starting point. From there as you improve your stroke you can increase speed a "little". Whenever it gets out of control you just back off a little. It is much easier to learn to feel the cue weight swing and sense what your body/arm is doing at a slower speed. One other suggestion might be to choke up on the butt end of the cue with about an 8 inch to 10" maxium length bridge. If your real long on either end it can hurt accuracy. I never let someone that is fairly new to the game get away with a long bridge. Just some thoughts, you'll need to experiment until you find what works best for you to be able to hit the c/b exactly where you intend to. One other thought is you should consider a lesson, before bad habits set in. There hard to break.

Jay M
06-13-2002, 03:01 AM
I KNOW that I have a tendency to drop my elbow. I also tend to pull my arm in at the very end of my follow-through.

When I break, I aim the tip of the cue between the carpet and the point where the cue ball is touching the carpet. The natural tendency with dropping my elbow is that the cue rises putting a hair of top english on the cue, stopping it in the center of the table after contact.

Yes, I know, my fundamentals are a little weak on the break and I have a LONG follow-through, but it works and has been called "a sledgehammer" and "the best break I've seen" by some of the top ranked pros so I'm not going to change it. Anyhow, my point is that you have to experiment with your break to see what works for you.

Here's a pic so you can all laugh at my breaking stroke. BTW, this is my brother's table, if it were mine, the cloth would be green. Oh, and yes, the cue, 4, 5 and 2 are in the air. And to address the original post, this was frozen rack and you'll notice that the 9 is still sitting where it started (until the 4 hit it). I made 3 balls on this break and had a nearly straight in shot on the 1 in the side with an easy runout from there.

Note the look of astonishment on Jim Carrey's face...rofl
Jay M

06-13-2002, 07:10 AM
I've found that position good also, whether you are right or left handed that is. Play the CB position a ball to the right if right handed, and the opposite if left handed. You may find that 1.5-2.0 balls sweetens up more for that table, experiment in that region. Gotta brag a little...I was practicing left handed stop shots for a couple of hours one Saturday and afterwards I decided to try breaking. Well I'd never in my life tried to break left handed before but I pocketed the 9 twice in the same corner pocket on the first two tries, AND then jawed the 9 in the same pocket the third break! No brag, just fact. Painful discovery was that my camcorder I was using for self help review had ran out before the breaking scenario. Like a cock robin I turned to the camera lense after the second snap and said, "Well how 'bout that folks(drinkin' just a little 'hiccup')" and then jawed that last ball. Damn was I unhappy to see the record light dimmed out after that. I was sure I had "the big fish that got away." sid~~~agrees it's luck BUT there IS some science in getting it moving

06-13-2002, 07:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Eddie G Chgo:</font><hr> What is the best way to break to give you the best chance at pocketing the 9 ball on the break? I sometimes see the 9 ball heading toward the right side corner pocket at the foot of the table. The 7 &amp; under tournament has a hot shot pool. The owner picks two people each week. Each one of them getd a chance to break. If they make the 9 ball on the break they win the hot shot pot. I think it was up to $435 last week. <hr></blockquote>

Trying to pocket the nine on the break is entirely different from just attempting to make other balls on the break.

Q-guy and Rod's advice give you the best shot/chance at your breaking contest.I would add that I'd inspect the rack carefully looking(and hoping) for the gap behind the nine ball(the gap highly promotes the nine taking off immediately).But my breaking experiences say that the cueball placement should be slightly off center of the head spot opposite the gap that you choose.Good luck.BS

Fred Agnir
06-13-2002, 08:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Eddie G Chgo:</font><hr> What is the best way to break to give you the best chance at pocketing the 9 ball on the break? <hr></blockquote>

I find that if I aim at the second rook, with 3.5 speed, the 9-ball does the old double-herring and goes straight in the corner pocket unmolested. White chalk has been known to increase my odds. Black chalk decreases it.

Hope this helps.


06-13-2002, 10:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Jay M:</font><hr> Here's a pic so you can all laugh at my breaking stroke. <hr></blockquote>Hi Jay,

Now that's a great pic! Thanks.

06-13-2002, 01:07 PM
We share some similar traits Jay. I know I drop my elbow, and also aim the tip at the base of the ball. My follow through is to the joint, more or less. That has shortened up in more recent years, due to break speed, sometimes both hands did come close to touching. I stand more upright, and the cue is delivered on that line without any tucking of my arm.

My break works great, and I'm not about to change either. I'm sure my break doesn't have quite your speed, but then it doesn't seem necessary to me. As I said in a post earlier I always leave some in reserve.

Your point is well taken, people do need to experiment to find out what works best for them. I believe I mentioned that to Eddie. It would not be my best intention to tell him or anyone to compensate for poor fundamentals. We do that on the break, but its hard to imagine telling someone that rarely finds the center of the c/b to pull such a maneuver. I know you did not suggest that idea, it's just an explanation.

Good picture BTW, where's the centennials? lol
I wonder why my Brother doesn't have a pool table? If he would throw out that bed upstairs, there's plenty of room!