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View Full Version : Open table, hit 8 ball first?



phil in sofla
10-11-2002, 01:21 AM
League game, open table after the break, and our guy accidentally nicks the 8 trying to shoot a solid. The other team calls a foul, our player argues that if he has no group yet, he doesn't have to hit either group first, and that the shot is just loss of turn on a miss (otherwise legal, something got to a rail). He doesn't convince them, but they can't find any rule addressing that situation as a foul, so they reluctantly let the foul call expire.

As it turned out, the closest the rules specified meant they were probably right. The rules mentioned that the 8 was not neutral (although it is allowed to be used in the middle of combos, just not first), but didn't say what that designation meant. Except a rule that was oddly put in the sections concerning shooting on the 8 mentions that a combination that starts with hitting the 8 is a foul. That still doesn't QUITE say hitting the 8 first on an open table is a foul, but seems to sure imply it. For, nothing about it being a combination makes it a foul, but just hitting the 8 first, and it doesn't specify either an open table or not.

What's the BCA rule on this? Reading it a couple of years back, and maybe it's changed, it seemed to allow hitting it first on an open table, with the specification that the 8 IS considered neutral. But when I asked a very experienced player and ph owner, he said although it was legal to hit it on an open table, you couldn't use it to pocket a combo, claim a group and keep shooting. He said it was an automatic loss of turn, nothing you pocketed would count to get a group, and you'd only use it as a safety play. I never saw anything of the sort in the version of the BCA rules I read. Was he right about that?

Cueless Joey
10-11-2002, 01:26 AM
4.9 OPEN TABLE
(Defined) The table is "open" when the choice of groups (stripes or solids) has not yet been determined. When the table is open, it is legal to hit a solid first to make a stripe or vice-versa. Note: The table is always open immediately after the break shot. When the table is open, it is legal to hit any solid or stripe first in the process of pocketing the called stripe or solid. However, when the table is open and the 8-ball is the first ball contacted, it is a foul and no stripe or solid may be scored in favor of the shooter. The shooter loses his turn; the incoming player is awarded cue ball in hand; any balls pocketed remain pocketed; and the incoming player addresses the balls with the table still open. On an open table, all illegally pocketed balls remain pocketed.

phil in sofla
10-11-2002, 02:32 AM
Has this rule changed in the past couple of years? My copy of the BCA rules back from the mid-'90s said something like you can't hit the 8 ball first unless the table is open (I'll grab it and get it exact).

Warren_Lushia
10-11-2002, 03:20 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: phil in sofla:</font><hr> Has this rule changed in the past couple of years? My copy of the BCA rules back from the mid-'90s said something like you can't hit the 8 ball first unless the table is open (I'll grab it and get it exact). <hr></blockquote>

yes it is a recent change, i forget exactly when, but my 1998 rulebook is also outdated for this particular rule.

warren..

phil in sofla
10-11-2002, 03:20 AM
LOL! I forgot how explicit it was back in the '92 rules!

from 9. OPEN TABLE (Defined) ... (blah, blah blah) ... When the table is open it is legal to ht any solid or stripe or the eight ball first in the process of pocketing the called stripe or solid.

So 10 years ago, BCA saw an open table 8 ball first combo as a legal shot that could claim a group and keep your inning going. And now it's a foul? Wonder why they changed the rule. To be more consistent with how most people view that shot, or what?

Chris Cass
10-11-2002, 03:45 AM
I think it's baloney Phil,

If the tables open it's open. If you didn't pocket a ball with the 8 being hit first then, as long as you drive something to a rail. It would be in cooperation with the foul rules. I don't know what the BCA rule is and probably shouldn't put in my 2 cents to confuse the issue. I think the whole thing is silly and bar league players take the BCA rules and put their take on them. This is why I hate league play. Just think Phil, this is your first week. LOL

Regards,

C.C.~~what's next, BCA regulation light bulbs?

10-11-2002, 03:52 AM
I know in Valley Leagues it's perfectly legal to nip the 8 ball with open table as long as you make the called ball in the called pocket. I don't know the BCA rule though as I've never played by them.

WesK
10-11-2002, 04:28 AM
I don't have the current rule book in front of me at this time. But I know that this issue comes up often and it is one that I usually check up on everytime the book gets published.

Prior to this year hitting the 8 first was a bit ambiguous as to whether or not it was a foul--it just couldn't be used first.

However, I seem to recall that in the 2002 edition of the BCA book, hitting the 8 first is now explictly a foul.

... An update: I just checked and Joey's quote is the same as what is on the BCA website (www.bca-pool.com). The rule states effective 2000.

I don't recall if it was written that way in the 2000 book (light blue cover) but I am almost positive it is written this way in the 2002 book (green and black cover).

wes

Fred Agnir
10-11-2002, 06:38 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: phil in sofla:</font><hr> Has this rule changed in the past couple of years? <hr></blockquote>
Yes it has changed recently, Phil. The way it was written up until about two years ago, you could argue that you could play a safety on your first shot using the 8-ball as the first ball.

Fred