Last night was APA night for my 8-Ball team. We met at California Billiards and started warming up in anticipation of playing one of the top teams in the league. (My team is dead last in the league…Wahoo!) When it was my turn to play, I knew I would be playing against one of the top players in the league in a race to 5 match. I jumped out to a quick lead, but he caught me and tied the match at 4-4. In the double-hill game, my opponent made a mistake and gave me a chance to clear my last 4 balls. The layout was not that difficult to run, but I missed the position zone on my last shot. The cue ball rolled just barely behind one of my opponent’s balls and I could not see enough of the stripe to make a clean cut into the corner pocket. I thought to myself, “Great! I just blew the match! Now what do I do?” I considered 3 different options for about a minute, knowing that if I missed the shot my opponent would be able run the table with no problems at all. Suddenly, I had an epiphany, and realized there was a 4th option that I had not originally considered, which of course I immediately choose to attempt.
Take a good look at the diagram below, and let me know (1) the different options you might consider, and (2) how would you ultimately play this shot? Tomorrow, I’ll tell you the options I considered, what I decided to do, and what the outcome was.