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P O O L    S H O O T E R

The Adventures of FastMikie
in search of Truth and Beauty in the art of pocket billiards.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

"Alabama" Last Pocket 8 ball

Dan made the trip from Orange County

for his first visit to the Fun House to shoot some pool.
That's dedication, when you drive 3 hours
to shoot pool for 5 hours.

He introduced me to Last Pocket 8 ball,
where the 8 must go in the same pocket as
the last of your stripes or solids.
It adds a whole new dimension of strategy,
and he trounced me with superior knowledge
of the end-game.

For extra confusion, he added the "Alabama"
version of 8 ball, whereby the 1 ball must be
pocketed into the left side and the 15 must
be pocketed into the right side.
Or maybe it's the other way around,
but you get the idea.

This leads to all sorts of nuances of rules,
such as: if the 1 or 15 goes in any other
pocket, it is immediately spotted and you
continue to shoot.
This makes for interesting possibilities
for intentionally pocketing the 1 or 15
in some other pocket, spotting it,
and using it for position on another ball,
or breaking a cluster, etc.
The 1 and 15 are racked directly behind the 8 ball,
each positioned on the opposite side
to where they are supposed to be pocketed.

I had never heard of either of these 8-ball variations,
but Dan says he read about Alabama 8 ball in a book
called "Playing Off The Rail: A Pool Hustler's Journey"
by Dan McCumber.

We also shot some 9 ball,
and we both won some, but it was mostly a social
setting, with lots of chatter, so I think we
need to have some serious matches before we
can decide who is the Champion of the (our) World.

Good fun!


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