So, when I first started watching snooker on TV, I heard a lot of jargon which I had no idea what it was about.
For example, “he’s playing this pink half ball.” Or, “he needs to hit this 3/4 and come back up!”
Have you heard that before? I bet you have, right?
Thing is, to those who are just watching for pleasure, those phrases mean nothing.
But, understanding and learning what they mean is simple and can be done in under five minutes.
And, from then on, being able to recognise them AND understand them on a snooker table and on the TV will be a doddle.
After reading this post, you’ll be able to:
- Understand what potting angles mean practically
- Recognize them on a snooker table
- Spot them on the TV
- And even be able to even pot some!
Here’s a visual of the most important angles in snooker!
Practice these and you’ll soon be recognizing them all over the table…
Let’s start with the easy one first!
Full ball contact (see image)
This isn’t an angle, but if you imagine two balls locked together, then you get a full ball contact! When you see a dead straight pot, you’re effectively looking at a full ball contact! When aiming, you will be aiming at the centre of the middle point of the object ball!
3/4 Ball Contact (that’s the yellow and red balls in the picture either side of the pink)
When you’re just off straight – and anywhere in between full ball and half ball, you’re going to be hitting the object with the cue ball at ¾ ball contact. The point of contact will be just off the middle as you see the shot. As the angle widens, you’ll end up with half ball…
Half Ball Contact (That’s the brown and black balls in the picture)
Interestingly, you’ll then gradually as the angle widens even more – end up hitting the ball quarter ball! (That’s the red and green balls at the end in the picture)
The Eighth Ball
This is the final angle of the four and is actually the easiest because any pot where you have to have a thin cut is an eighth ball contact or more…(In the picture, this would be another ball placed next to the quarter ball red and green balls in the picture)
As the angle widens, you are hitting less of the ball, as the angle narrows, you’re hitting more of the ball!
Also, depending on which angle you’re on, the point of contact of the cue ball and object ball doesn’t change, it’s just you’re looking at the point from a different position!
So, there you go! Potting angles understood in minutes!
A LITTLE EXERCISE FOR YOU:
Watch a frame/s of snooker on the TV and see if you can spot which angle the player is on when making a break! Call it out – obviously, TV camera angles can be deceptive but call out a rough estimate of what you think the angle might be!
Enjoy your learning and practicing of potting angles!
PS: Start learning to aim like a pro and learn potting angles in seconds practicing with Nic Barrow’s amazing Aim Frame and end up making higher breaks and potting more balls! Read the SnookerZone review…
Chris Gaynor is a writer with 10 years’ experience writing for the web.
He loves snooker, CSI and loves cycling off tiramisu!