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10-Ball Break

Posted by : Tom Simpson ASK THE MASTER:
Here in Clarksville, Tennessee they have a break pool for a ten ball rack. Question is; what's the secret of making one or more balls on the break (without scratching) in order to at least put some money in my pockets?

It's harder to make a ball on the 10-Ball break than in 9-Ball or 8-Ball, but the principles are the same. Generally, you're trying to find a spot to break from that works for you (on that table, with those balls, today). That means you should practice breaking on the table on which the Break Challenge takes place. Find your break spot, tip position, and break speed.

Currently, Shane Van Boening is widely considered to have the best 10-Ball break. It's powerful and consistent. It pockets balls and usually parks the cueball in mid-table (not every time, of course). I saw Shane sink six balls on the break recently! Of course, he has probably put 100 hours into practicing his break. I suggest pulling up some recent matches on YouTube and checking out Shane's cueball placement, tip position, speed, and whatever else you can see. Adopt what you reasonably and consistently can.

For the Break Challenge, if possible, clean the balls first. This can help your results be more consistent & predictable. Before you break, examine the rack. While there is a lot known about "reading the cracks & gaps in the rack," unless you've mastered all that, insist on a perfect rack. No gaps, on the spot, square.

As you work on the break, consider the break principles discussed in my article, "Breaking Smarter." If you'd like a copy of the article, just send me an email at Tom@PoolClinics.com. Mention breaking in your email.