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Two For Agility

Posted by : Liz Ford

Expand your pool profile with these two dynamic games that test your finesse and control. What do they have in common? By forcing your mind to adapt beyond the average goal of pocketing the ball, you can evolve from a good shot to a mover and shaker on the table. Grab your cue - and a friend - and check out some new ways to have fun playing pool while practicing your sense of touch.

Tag
This game is played like 8-Ball but with a difficult twist.

Game rules:
You need to pocket the seven balls in your suit (solids or stripes) before you can pocket the 8-ball for the win. You call the solid or stripe ball you're going to pocket just like in a regular game. The added challenge is that you also have to plan and execute contacting a second ball with the cue ball during your leave (you can chose any ball on the table as your second ball).

When calling your shot, it'll sound something like this, “3 in the side and then the cue ball is going to hit the 10.”

To get credit for your shot, you need to pocket your first ball and make contact with your second ball. Hitting the rail after second-ball contact isn't necessary, just a nudge will do. The cue ball must hit the second ball before contacting any other ball on the table (except for the one you're pocketing!)

Failure to pocket your shot or to contact your second ball ends your turn. Any ball you pocket as your primary shot without also contacting your second ball will be spotted.

You need to hit a second ball while pocketing the 8, as well. If you fail to contact your second ball and the 8 is pocketed, it gets spotted. If the 8 is the only ball left on the table, a second target ball will be placed on the foot spot or head spot (players choice) at the beginning of each attempt to win.

Don't Make the Ball!
This game will have you convinced that it's opposite day – as the game is lost, not won, when you sink a ball!

Game rules:
Place an object ball on the foot spot (the spot where you rack).

To start the game, player one takes ball in hand and shoots the object ball towards, but not into, one of the top corner pockets (at the breaking end of the table). Player two then tries to do the same from where the balls lie.

The objective for both players is to hit the object ball closer and closer to the pocket in order to force the other player to accidentally pocket the ball.

There is no requirement to hit a rail after contact, but the object ball must be contacted or else the incoming player gets ball in hand.

As games can go very quickly, play a best of seven or nine games – with the loser of the previous game going first.