View Full Version : 1 eyed pool players?

phil in sofla
08-12-2002, 12:18 PM
There's a young man at my usual ph, shoots very well, probably the match of anyone who comes in there. He has one very bad eye, from a birth defect, and he mainly sees some light and forms with it, but nothing at all specific, and there isn't any correction possible for it, evidently. Still plays extremely well, despite having about zero depth perception.

Have you known 1-eyed pool players (either literally missing an eye, or about blind in one)? Historically, has one of them ever reached the pinnacle of players, for their day? Or is lack of depth perception too tough to overcome?

08-12-2002, 12:40 PM
There's a one-eyed player who shoots in our Friday-night 8-ball tournament. He is an APA skill level 5. I don't know if his vision is holding him back, or if it is other variables. BTW, his name is Phil also.


08-12-2002, 12:49 PM

08-12-2002, 12:57 PM
over the years, i've known several shooters who had only one functioning eye. one, when i was a teenager was absolutely unbeatable. he also, unfortunately, owned the hottest corvett around and was just plain scary.

i wish someone had a genuine scientific understanding of the pool question tho. i've often wondered if it could, in some cases, be an advantage to close or cover one eye.


08-12-2002, 01:17 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: whitewolf:</font><hr>

BTW, my brother had his eye put out when he was young, and what he can do with one eye is beyond me. <hr></blockquote>

I know this is a little off-topic, but when I was about 10 I knew a guy who lost one eye to an arrow. His older brother was shooting a bow, and used the partially-drawn bow to "wave" the younger kids away from the firing line. The arrow slipped from his grip and he shot out his little brother's eye. After he recovered, we found that if you pointed a stick at his face, he would scream and run. Kids can be pretty cruel, huh?


08-12-2002, 01:55 PM
Interesting that you bring this up, Phil. I, myself, am 'blind' in my right eye - birth defect - probably the same condition as the gentleman you describe. I believe it resulted from the forceps used to 'pull' me out. You would be surprised by the number of incidents in which this occurred - often resulting in what is know as 'lazy eye.' The damaged eye has the appearance of being 'crossed.' I often wonder if I would/could be a better pool player if I had decent vision in my right eye..could be worse though. But by no means, would I say that my blindness has affected my game in a negative fashion - like I said, it could be a lot worse - I could be blind in both eyes and not be able to enjoy the game at all...


08-12-2002, 02:03 PM
There's a guy at Tacony that has an eye that looks "out", if you know what I mean. But it sure doesn't affect his shooting. He's one of the better shortstops in the place.


08-12-2002, 02:58 PM
Our Florida friends probably know of Tom Brown, a room owner who was actually on BD's cover back in the mid-'80s. He's a winker. And I used to hear about a crusty old hustler from Washington state named Yakima Alex, who also had one eye. I don't know how they do it with their depth perception flawed like that, but I guess it's just a matter of getting used to what you've got. Or, put another way, life handed them a lemon and they made pretty fair lemonade with it. GF

08-12-2002, 03:13 PM
There was a player that may have played as good as anyone at one time named Tony Howard (One eyed Tony) Man could he play on a bar table.

08-12-2002, 05:16 PM
There is a young lady that plays in a weekly 9 ball tournament and also in a weekly 9 ball league. She closes her left eye to aim. Just like a rifle site. She is still learning table management, but can make a ball from just about anywhere.. She says that she didn't know that she had to have both eyes open until just recently and that the one eye method has worked well for her.. and doesn't want to change..

08-12-2002, 05:37 PM
I noticed a while ago that I found aiming in Virtual Pool 3 easier than in real life and played around with closing an eye a few times but decided it doesn't make enough difference in the real game to worry about too much.

In theory you would still have enough psudeo depth perception to relise where the balls were. The key to this is that all the balls are the same size, so you can judge the distance well just by how large they appear with one eye. I am sure that someone who only has one eye would be well practiced at this and wouldn't find it a handicap at all.


08-12-2002, 07:17 PM
Howdy folks,
There is one guy from eastern kentucky- prestonberg area- named one eye Jack, an excellent player made a good living playing pool.
I am a legally blind some times in left eye and some times in the right eye.Believe it or not.Serious,I am actually legally blind in left eye and this is the reason I could not move from a `C` player to `B`player.Cheers

08-12-2002, 07:36 PM
Mike G., also known as one-eyed Mike, shoots pretty good pool, but even he admits he was better when he had both. /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

08-13-2002, 10:28 AM
I am a one eyed player,...I would say it has hindered me, especially on the long shots, as the balls are blurry from corner to corner.

I wear glasses, left eye bad, and tried recently again to get contacts, but I just cannot wear them.

I have to make up for my eyesight by better position play so I do not have those long shots.

When I was younger it did not matter position, I could sink corner to corner, both balls frozen. Now it matters and I have gotten smarter in my play and play safeties more.


08-13-2002, 10:32 AM
So closing one eye would be just like shooting a rifle,.. if I could only get as accurate as I can shoot one.


Mike H
08-13-2002, 12:19 PM
I'm surprised nobody replied with this player: Niels Feijen from Holland, one of the top tourney players in the world last year, has only one eye. Goes to show how far great work ethic can take you.

Chris Cass
08-13-2002, 03:24 PM
Sorry Vagabond, I don't buy it.


08-13-2002, 03:34 PM
ha, Vag your pulling the wrong leg here. funny how players go blind when they talk about their game. I've only talked to a few lately, but none of them could see either, including me! But mine IS legitimate. lol

Voodoo Daddy
08-14-2002, 10:22 AM
I spent several years playing/traveling with Tom Brown. He was talented beyond words at the table. His depth perception pretty muched failed after 9'...just far enough to cut a ball backwards!! From what I hear he doesnt play much these days and runs "Brown's Billiards" in Holly Hill Fl.

08-14-2002, 10:41 AM
I guess that is true,...I am trying to figure ways around my deficit. I am getting better at trying different strategies, safeties and kicks mainly, to make up the difference.


9 Ball Girl
08-14-2002, 10:48 AM
Stupid Question:

Laser surgery? I have to wear hard lenses because of a medical condition that has developed over the years in my left eye. Wearing the hard lenses took some time to get used to and now I hate to not wear them! I unfortunately can't get laser surgery.

Wendy~~wondering what it would be like to wake up with perfect vision

08-14-2002, 10:51 AM
I cannot get lazer surgery, I have the lazy eye and it does not fix it.


9 Ball Girl
08-14-2002, 10:57 AM
Hey Griff, forgive me for my ignorance, but my friend had a lazy eye and it was corrected by wearing an eyepatch over the "good" eye to force the lazy eye to focus. I don't know how long she wore the patch for, though.

08-14-2002, 11:02 AM

9 Ball Girl
08-14-2002, 11:09 AM
I wasn't around 35 years ago as I am only 28. But these go over the pupils and they're a little smaller than the actual pupil. Soft lenses are way bigger than these hard ones. I have this thing in my left eye called keratoconus. This is the misshapen cornea. Where the cornea should be flat and curved, mine is flat and sticks out a little, not visible to the naked eye but the docs can see it with their machines. Anyway, wearing glasses will not help so I have no choice but to wear hard lenses. The hard lense in the left eye sort of "squishes" my cornea down and slows down the progress of my cornea getting worse. It's not a big deal compared to other eye maladies that are out there. Unfortunately, the lenses have to move but you get used to it.

Once I started to wear these contacts, I got scared at everything I could see clearly that I wasn't able to see without them. It was scary just seeing what I really look like in the mirror! LOL /ccboard/images/icons/laugh.gif

08-14-2002, 11:40 AM
In 4th grade when I was first diagnosed with the "goof off" eye, I wore the patch and wore the patch on my left eye,....I got a lot of headaches because mine is so bad.

I can cross my eyes and can see out of the left one, but I look kinda funny so I gave it up.

I have resigned to the fact that the only thing that can be done is get sports goggles,....now talk about funny looking.


08-14-2002, 01:34 PM
I'm surprised nobody replied with this player: Niels Feijen from Holland, one of the top tourney players in the world last year, has only one eye."

Really? This would explain his unusual head position for sure. I thought that one eyes was just defective in some way. Do you mean he hads a glass eye or something? Or just blind in one eye?

-only guy I've ever seen who puts his cue under his dominant "ear"!

Mike H
08-15-2002, 03:35 PM
If I recall correctly, I was told he has only one eye. I assume this means that he has a glass eye.

08-16-2002, 10:56 PM
Any discussion of outstanding one eyed pool players must include Jaffar Basheer aka one eyed Henry formerly fom Phila. Fred