The diagram gives two examples of pots into the
shows a straight pot, the line of aim going through the
centre of the cue-ball, the centre of the object-ball,
and the centre of the pocket. This is the
only time the line of aim
coincides with the point of contact.
Stroke B, a quarter-ball
cut, shows the line of aim for the cue-ball, and the line
the object-ball must take to enter the pocket. Note that
the object-ball has not been aimed to the centre of the
pocket, but further to the right. If the line of aim
were to the centre of the
pocket then the near jaw may be struck first, and the pot
would be missed.
When you are faced with any pot similar to this, especially those at a longer
distance, make sure you look for your line of aim before you take up your position
at the table.
This is where the aiming process begins, and it is critical that you understand the
importance of this.
Every 'How to Play' book will tell you how to aim, but 99% of
them fail to stress that you begin aiming
before you reach the table.
So - stand back, look to see where you wish the centre of
the cue-ball to be when it strikes the object-ball, and keep your eyes
focused on this point as you step in to the playing position. Your body should
then be perfectly balanced along the line of aim.
Now address the cue-ball a few times, taking the tip of your cue as close to the
cue-ball as you can. As you do this, check to see that you are aiming the cue at
the part of the cue-ball you need to strike.
Look up along your line of aim to check that you are still aiming your cue correctly,
and when you are ready to play the shot ensure that you are looking at the point
of aim, not the point of contact.
You must keep your eyes fixed on this point as you play the stroke to see if the
cue-ball actually arrives where you have aimed. If it doesn't, then obviously your
cue-action or steadiness on the stroke is at fault.
If it does arrive where you have aimed, and you miss the pot, then you will know
that you have aimed incorrectly. This will improve as you gain experience and you'll
gradually gain the consistency that will make you a far better player.
If all this seems strange when you try it for the first time, please trust me and stay
with it. You will be surprised at how much control you feel coming into your game.