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Friday, 08 March 2019


You said "Those of us who play cue sports know how insanely hard it is to do what he does", but I suspect a lot of pool players still underestimate it! I play pool on a 6' table most weekdays (I have the luxury of a table in the office I work in) and have played snooker 5 - 10 times and the gulf between the two is, IMO, enormous! The sheer size of the snooker table is the obvious difference - the first time I played on one it seemed more like a football (sorry, soccer) pitch than a pool table. Add to that the more subtle break-off shot leaving most of the reds clustered tightly together, rather than spread across the table as the balls are in pool, and getting a break of more than 4 balls is a rarity for me.

Every time I've tried playing pool or snooker (haven't in over 30 years), it was always the same pattern. In the first 10-15 minutes I'd sink some shots that I didn't think were possible and being to feel confident. Then I'd spend the next hour or two missing everything, slowly getting more and more frustrated till I had to quit.

"A "perfect game" in snooker is a 147. "

A 'super-perfect' game would be 154.

It entails one player making a foul right at the beginning, the ref awarding the other player a free ball, which counts as a red, then the player pots a black, followed by the normal 147.

I don't think it's ever happened, but it is theoretically possible...

How great it is to be an editor with the freedom to make interesting assignments and a writer who gets all the best ones.

Did the French army at Agincourt think they we’re competing in a sporting match? 8-)

Mike, if Ronnie got you into snooker you may also want to investigate the life and career of Alex "Hurricane" Higgins, he may also appeal to you.

@Andrew, completely agree re snooker vs pool but also consider that tournament snooker tables are far far more difficult than ordinary snooker tables as found in snooker halls - not only in speed but in that the pockets are far more recessed. It makes the pro's achievements even more incredible.

I know that Lotus are not as reliable as Mercedes ...and of course Ronnie is unsurpassable ...but some of us still miss Jimmy White!

The nearest thing to a Lotus that ever played on the green bais.

Do I remember correctly - it has been since college decades ago that I played snooker - that the pockets are narrower than on a pool table? Or maybe that was just the table at Rice.:-) But it demanded a more sure touch then pool to get the ball in.

Just briefly? Really? ;)

I can relate to your passion for snooker, having whiled away hours playing the game at University instead if studying. Pool never appealed as much, but Minnesota Fats in “The Hustler” impressed me with his scripted gamesmanship. Surely Ronnie’s natural talent would elevate him above resorting to such tactics. His mere presence at the table conveys sufficient psychological advantage.

I shall end with the heresy here in the States that cricket rivals baseball as a sublime team sport. You must forgive my natural bias as a former British colonial subject.

Played snooker a lot when I was growing up in Montreal. The place was called "Leader's" on St. Catherine Street and it was on the floor above a car dealership When you walked in, there was a rack on the left with players personal pool cues and seasonal rentals. (you could rent your favorite cue for a year for $5.00) Next to it was a photograph from the early '50s of local player Leo Levitt shooting a perfect score of 147. There were 36 tables and a row of windows looking out to the street below. It reminded me of the pool halls in "The Hustler". I loved that place and I loved snooker. Too bad they don't play it in the US.

Considering their touch, balance and coordination, why aren't more women beating the men?

More reason for your admiration - He wrote a crime novel.

For those who maybe don't wish to spend the time watching a typical century break, it's worth googling "Ronnie O'Sullivan fastest 147". Shows all the aforementioned attributes in a neat 5:20 package.

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