World Rules - a summary
The following is not a complete copy of the entire Rules, but is a summary of the main differences from EPA rules, and rules which most people will have played in the past. Please
see the official definition of World Rules on the English Pool Association website for a complete description.
(E) Playing From Baulk
Whenever the Cue ball is played from the baulk, the centre of the White must be behind the baulk line, and not on it.
(F) The Break
- The balls are racked up slightly differently with balls 3 (yellow) and 4 (red) on the bottom row changing places. If you look at the rack there are five yellow balls which form a 'tick'.
- From the break, you must POT a ball, or at least FOUR balls must hit a cushion.
- If the Cue ball is potted from the break, then the on-coming player has only ONE visit.
(G) Legal Shot
- Every time you take a shot you must either POT your ball OR, if you fail to pot, then any ball (including the cue ball) must touch a cushion AFTER hitting the object ball.
- If an object ball is touching the cushion when contact is made by the Cue Ball, it is not deemed as a legal shot until a ball makes a further contact with a cushion, or the object ball hits a different cushion.
(H) Deciding Colours
- If an object ball is potted on the break you must nominate which colour you wish to play.
- If you nominate the colour of the ball you have potted on the break, you stay on that colour for the rest of the frame.
- If you nominate the colour you did not pot, then you need to pot one of that colour on your next shot to confirm your choice, or else your opponent has an open table.
(K) Standard Fouls
All fouls are the same as existing rules with the following additions below;
- If you pot or hit your opponent’s ball deliberately, this is not loss of frame, just a foul and 2 visits.
- Touching the table while holding a cigarette or drink.
- Touching the table when not in control.
- Not moving away from the table within 10 seconds of playing your shot.
- Leaving the playing area without permission from the referee.
- See section G above.
- See section R below.
When you are awarded a foul, you have 2 visits, but, you CANNOT move the white or play your opponents ball or black except where rule R3 (foul snooker) comes into play.
(Q) Total Snookers
If you are snookered (you cannot play any part of any of your object balls), you may ask the referee for a total snooker to be called. This means that you still have to hit your ball, but you don't have to hit a cushion after contact with the object ball.
(R) Foul Snookers
If you go to the table after a foul has been called and you are snookered (i.e. you cannot play the finest possible cut on either side of any of your object balls), you may ask the referee for a foul snooker to be called. This means you may do one of the following;
- Play from where the cue ball lies and nominate one of your opponent’s balls or the black (you must indicate which ball you are nominating).
- Ask the referee to move the cue ball to behind the baulk line (the referee must be the one to move the cue ball).
(U) Balls Off The Table
Balls off the table are re-spotted on the black spot or as near as possible in a straight line between the spot and the Back Cushion in the follow order Black ball, Red balls, Yellow balls.
(V) Balls Falling Without Being Hit
If the black or white ball falls into a pocket without being hit, it is replaced as near as possible to its original place.
(X) Impossible Shot
If you cannot play a shot without fouling you must still play a shot. There are no re-rack situations.
(O) Push Shots
Any shot played with speed will not be deemed to be a push shot regardless of the fact that the cue tip may have come into contact with the cue ball more than once.
Exceptions that are standard fouls;
- When during the playing of a shot the tip of the cue strikes the Cue Ball twice and the referee is able to see the contact.
- When during the playing of a shot, a player plays the cue so slowly through the Cue Ball that the cue tip remains in contact with the cue ball so to be visibly pushing it along.
- When the Cue Ball is played into a touching object ball.
If you have two shots, remember that any 1st shot used to position a ball for potting must satisfy the legal shot rule, including a ball hitting a cushion.
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