View Full Version : Successful journey back...

08-16-2008, 04:03 AM
Hey all, you may recall I had taken some time off of pool and rejoined this last session. Well I spent a good portion of the session back on hiatus for personal reasons. Towards the end, my team asked for me to return, as they were in first place and felt I could help put them over the top to clinch it all. I told them I'd be glad to do it, but as out of practice as I am that i could just as easily sink them to the bottom as I could raise them up another notch /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

Well, I spent my first two weeks back on the sidelines... practicing and coaching, and just being present to try to help throw off any put ups, etc. (most teams know me, and know I am better than my APA rank in 8 ball... little did they know I actually sucked right then). Well, as it wore on, we got down to the final two weeks in a tight race for first. Long story short, they finally put me up in the clinching match to ensure we had first place. I played pretty bad by my standards, but pulled off the W to clinch it.

On to playoffs, and week one we had a lovely 3-0 win over the wild card team, in which a couple of our "little guns" stepped up and made my work easy that week. So onto the trophies next week. We played one of our big guns first to jump out to a 1-0 lead. Second one of our strong 4's got upset, going down to some mental mistakes (an E-8 and S-8 doesn't help). Third match our opponents put up a 4 of theirs who I played very early in the session, and let me tell you he could be a 6 easy. he just so happened to have the benefit of playing against all the big guns all session, which kept him balanced out as a 4 (that's his story at least). So I decide to take a chance and put up one of our weaker players (a 3) against him, with the idea being that either A) she might get lucky! or B) she'd go down but that would leave them with only players that myself and our other big gun should be able to easily handle the last two matches.

Well, to all of our delight either their man couldn't handle the pressure, or couldn't play a girl... but he was off! Add to that our girl played the match of her life... and she squeaked out a victory that came down to the last ball all the way. Let me tell you, that's about as happy as I've ever been for one of my players. She wanted this as badly as anyone, and she stepped up and did the job!

So now wanting to put it away, we decide I'd go ahead and shoot match 4 to close it on out. I'll gladly admit I was VERY off my game shooting-wise that night. But luckily my brain still worked and I was able to dink around balls here and there and make sure I left my opponent uncomfortable shots (my opponent was a good shooter, but an aging fellow who struggled with certain shots and getting around the table). After a long ugly match I wound up closing it on out, and to my surprise winning 4 people their first trophies!

Was the first time in a long time I was "excited" about a match like that. One of the league operators came up and congratulated me, saying "not bad, first session back, you win first and win trophies". All I could tell him was that it felt good, and I was glad to be back... and as always happy to do my job for the team. But if you wanna see why we won first and trophies, you gotta look at those guys and girls over there. They were the ones that earned it... and if not for their desire, fight, and "want" I wouldn't even be in the poolhall right now.

I've spent a lot of time over the years working with people, getting them into the game, teaching little odds and ends to newcomers. But it tickles me pink to think back about these last few weeks, and realize how much I learned from a few people that couldn't beat me on the tables on my worst night... yet I learned more from them that I could ever have hoped to teach them. Watching their faces light up, their excitement... just reminded me of why I fell in love with the game in the first place.


Rich R.
08-16-2008, 06:12 AM
That is a great story Sack. I'm glad your team was able to rekindle your spirit.

Your story is a prime example of what I have always believed. When it comes to league play, the top players win matches, but it is the lower players that win championships.

08-16-2008, 07:52 PM
It shows that with practice with can return to our youth. Good work Sack.