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    is there such a thing as a "safety shot" in the game of 8 ball pool

    0  Views: 227 Answers: 1 Posted: 6 years ago

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    "4.12 “SAFETY” SHOT
    For tactical reasons, a player may choose to pocket an obvious object ball and also discontinue a turn at the table by declaring “safety” in advance. A safety shot is defined as a legal shot. If the shooting player intends to play safe by pocketing an obvious object ball, then prior to the shot, the shooter must declare a “safety” to the opponent. It is the shooter’s responsibility to make the opponent aware of the intended safety shot. If this is not done, and one of the shooter’s object balls is pocketed, the shooter will be required to shoot again. Any ball pocketed on a safety shot remains pocketed."


    The purpose of the safety shot is to be able to pocket a ball from your own group (i.e., if you're solids, a solid, and vice-versa), without going again. Situations where safeties are helpful are not all that common but let me give you an example.


    You're coming to the table with the eight ball at one end of the table, and your last two ball on the other end of the table and all your opponents balls near the eight ball. One of your remaining ball is sitting in the jaws of the pocket, and your second to last object ball is nearby it. You see that getting position on the eight ball is very tricky. So you call a safety, pocket the jawed object ball and leaving the cue ball right behind the other object ball hiding all you opponent's balls from him. Since you called a safety, you aren;t forced to go again.


    Now, if your opponent doesn't hit one of his balls, you get ball in hand, and with ball in hand, you can place the cue ball in the best place so that position from your last ball to the eight ball is maximized.


    Note also that the word safety may also be used vernacularly to simply describe any shot where you are trying to hide or snooker the cue ball from the opponent, and not necessarily the actually called "safety shot."


    With regard to the second question the answer is no. On every shot in eight ball, you must contact your object balls first. This means, for example, that if you are stripes, on every shot, the cue ball must contact a stripe first. Once you clear all of your ball off the table, then the eight ball becomes the object ball for that player.


    The failure to contact an object ball first is a foul and the penalty for a foul is ball-in-hand, which means that the player committing the foul loses his turn and the incolming player gets to pick up the cue ball and place it anywhere on the table (except if the foul is on the break; then the penalty is ball in hand "behind the line" (behind the head string, a line formed between the second diamonds on the long rails up from the same side side of the table that you break from).


    So if your opponent who still has two stripes on the table hits the cue ball into the eight ball he loses his turn and you get to put the cue ball anywhere you want.


    You can read all the rules for 8-ball yourself, here:


    http://www.bca-pool.com/play/tournaments/rules/rls_8bl.shtml



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