My Journey into 9 Ball Pool

I’ve recently started playing pool again, the 9 ball variety that is,  and this time I’m taking it seriously.

I’d always enjoyed playing pool but generally the only chance to play comes when I’m in the pub.

I do have my own 7ft American Style table but unfortunately it’s been ‘out of commission’ for the last year and a half to two years after moving house and being unable to find the space but hopefully I’ll be moving into a house with enough room to get the old table out soon.

I got back in touch with an old friend – Malcolm Clarke, whom I’ve known since… well as far back as I can remember, who has played on the pro tour and with him have managed to get a couple of hours of 9 ball under my belt and have really enjoyed the racks we’ve played as well as just getting in touch with an old mate – one which I must’ve spent hundreds of hours playing NHL games with in our youths.

Now, I’m the type of person that will read just about everything I can find about technique and tactics and always welcome hints and tips so that’s what I’ve been doing as well as watching all the 9 ball I can find on youtube, mostly Efren Reyes and Earl Strickland.

Mal has agreed to help coach me and I must say that even after just a few tips the difference in my game after receiving the advice is more than noticeable. He also gave me a great book, ‘Play your best 9 Ball’ which I’d recommend any aspiring 9 ball player to read as I’m sure it will benefit everyone from beginners to the pros.

My cue - a BCE BA-26I’ve bought my own cue now, (pictured) so that I can get used to one cue rather than using a different club cue each time I play and I’m looking forward to testing it out this Saturday.

I now really can’t wait to get my table back up and running so that I can work on my game at home as well as in the club, but until then I’ll keep playing Virtual Pool 3 – the best billiards game available on the PC to date, to help with sighting and tactics.

And who knows, with the practice I’m willing to put in, my drive to get better and my competitive nature you may see me in a tournament in the distant future, hopefully winning it.

Be sure to check back here to see how I’m progressing and until the next post, Seeya.

4 thoughts on “My Journey into 9 Ball Pool

  1. Mal

    You for sure have the basics. Straightish cue delivery which is half the battle. The rest is shot selection.

    I still play NHL! NHL 1998 was the game I remember as being the best, but I bet that would look sick now.

    Will get some good racks in on Saturday.

  2. Stephen Hoult Post author

    I keep going back to the Mega Drive – I actually have your NHL’97 cartridge.

    I got NHL’98 at Christmas along with a new PC, I remember ringing you saying “have you seen the Rangers Roster?”.

    NHL’98 had by far the best intro video too. ‘Are you afraid of the masked man?’.

  3. Mal

    Yeah, NHL 10 is pretty slick though. Very good gameplay which I thought was missing in the NHL 04 – 09 games which I barely played. Any game with Gretzky and Messier on is worth having though!!

  4. Stephen Hoult Post author

    I’ve only played 5 minutes on NHL’10 basically just went through the training when you first run the game – can’t see me getting used to shooting with the right stick!

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