Rules to play 9 ball Pool
9 ball pool played on a small table. Hit the balls in numerical order for the best score.
1. Determining the Break
The player who wins the lag chooses who will break the first rack. (See 1.2 Lagging to Determine Order of Play.) The standard format is to alternate the break, but see Regulation 15, Subsequent Break Shots.
2. Nine ball rack
The object balls are racked as tightly as possible in a diamond shape, with the one ball at the apex of the diamond and on the foot spot and the nine ball in the middle of the diamond. The other balls will be placed in the diamond without purposeful or intentional pattern. (See Regulation 4, Racking Tapping of Balls.)
3. Legal break shot
The following rules apply to the break shot:
(a) the cue ball begins in hand behind the head string; and
(b) if no ball is pocketed, at least four object balls must be driven to one or more rails, or the shot is a foul. (See Regulation 17, Open Break Requirements.)
4. Second Shot of the Rack Push Out
If no foul is committed on the break shot, the shooter may choose to play a push out as his shot. He must make his intention known to the referee, and then rules 6.2 Wrong Ball First and 6.3 No Rail after Contact are suspended for the shot. If no foul is committed on a push out, the other player chooses who will shoot next.
5. Continuing play
If the shooter legally pockets any ball on a shot (except a push out, see 2.4 Second Shot of the Rack Push Out), he continues at the table for the next shot. If he legally pockets the nine ball on any shot (except a push out), he wins the rack. If the shooter fails to pocket a ball or fouls, play passes to the other player, and if no foul was committed, the incoming player must play the cue ball from the position left by the other player.
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