Chris Gaynor here
Imagine…Going to play on a “snooker table” for the first time.
Seeing how huge it is, shocked by its size.
Overwhelmed by the task that lies in front of you. I know when I first played on a table all those years ago, it felt…
- and very frustrating!
Fast forward now, and it’s lost that intimidating and scary factor, but, it’s still, at times, very frustrating!
You’ll feel it, believe me.
Your cue action when you first play is swinging everywhere bar straight, and, even when you roll a ball along the table you can’t pot it.
And, you’re wondering why nothing is going right!
Hold on though…This is where SnookerZone can help!
Here, we debunk a few myths, and give you the confidence to understand what’s going on and how the table affects how you play on it! Understanding table mechanics will help you adapt to each table you play on, through trial and error.No two tables are the same, and this is where your powers of adaptation come into play! You need to adapt to each table you play on, and, sometimes, quickly! Especially if you're in a match! Click To Tweet
Let’s dive right in.
MYTH 1: SNOOKER TABLE OR BILLIARD TABLE?
The first IMPORTANT myth to debunk is that the tables you and I play on are not called “snooker” tables, they are called billiard tables.
It’s like using the word hoover when it’s vacuuming. Hoover is a brand, but has become synonymous with the term, “I’m getting the hoover out to do the hoovering!! When you might use a Dyson or Vax! If you want to avoid being lambasted by hardcore fans, just say tables. We know what you mean!
Billiards was the first game played on a table and the great game snooker, now played worldwide, developed from billiards.
Snooker grew because it was “faster” than billiards and good for TV. And, now, more interesting for the viewing public.
Now, moving on, you’ll also learn:
- Why one table isn’t necessarily better than another.
- Why professionals prefer faster cloths.
- What cloths there are out there.
- What the differences are between pockets on match and club tables.
- And much more…
OK, let’s continue…
MYTH 2: THIS TABLE’S BETTER?
On the professional circuit, they use the Star brand, a table which looks great on the surface, but is it “better” than an ordinary table in a club? Well, “Yes,” and “No”. What makes the table play better is the cloth that is used on the professional match table.
The real star of the show is…
NO 10 STRACHAN CLOTH!
World Snooker use No 10 Strachan Championship cloth and have used Strachan cloths since 1980.
What is it? The cloths are made from fine merino wool and offer longer-lasting resistance. The problem is, on the professional tour, the cloths do not last very long. If these “super” cloths were to be used in clubs, you’d have to change them very regularly. That would be costly indeed!
In the days of the Alex Higgins and Steve Davis era, the cloths were much slower. Technology has moved on a lot and now brands such as Strachan have developed cloths with anti-kick technology to help prevent kicks for players in matches.
EVEN CLUB TABLES CAN HAVE EXPENSIVE RE-FITS!
Refitting cloths can be expensive. In the club where SnookerZone plays, he was told that the match cloth used in the club was around £700. A lot of money! Hence, you don’t want any Tom, Dick, or Harry going on it and potentially ripping it up! Match tables need to be used sparingly! All tables need to be covered up.
Even at the lower end of the re-fit, it is still expensive, so, as a beginner snooker player, it would pay if you invested in a coach, so that you know what you’re doing on the table and don’t give the snooker club owner a nightmare and a cost to need to re-fit, AND, also, a headache to boot!
Give the table some respect!
ANOTHER CLOTH MANUFACTURER: HAINSWORTH
Hainsworth is another cloth manufacturer and they have three types of cloth. They are…
Some clubs will often go for a slightly “cheaper” cloth on most tables but they are still great quality and long-lasting but they must be looked after properly! The important thing is to brush the cloths regularly and ironing helps to make the table run faster.
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