Rodney’s Classy Move

I pulled a quick two and out at the West Coast 10 Ball Challenge this April and had the opportunity to watch a Rodney Morris match that I’ll never forget.  Rodney was playing against a pretty decent shooter (I didn’t catch his name) on table 12.  The match was a race to 8 and Rodney was up 7-3.  Rodney made the one ball on the break but left an open shot on the 2 ball for his opponent.  It was a pretty tough layout, so his opponent looked the table over for what seemed like three or four minutes, then began pocketing balls.  2, 3, 4…he was methodically dropping balls and it soon became apparent that he had a chance to run the rack out.  Near the end of his very difficult run, he played the 7 ball and got perfect position on the 9.  He was hyper focused and started stroking for the next shot, not realizing the 8 ball was still on the table. I was sitting directly in his line of sight and noticed the error, but I was torn…do I say anything before he shoots…or not?  I decided not to say anything because it wouldn’t be fair to Rodney.  The rules are the rules and a foul would give Rodney ball in hand and almost certainly the game and match.  A few seconds later the player fired the 9 into the corner pocket and got perfect (and pretty difficult) position on the 8 ball.  I glanced over at Rodney waiting for the foul to be called, but Rodney just raised his eyebrows, leaned forward a bit in his chair, looked the table over, then sat back to watch the next shot.  The shooter had been so focused on making the 9 ball and getting proper position on the 8 that he never realized he was shooting out of order.  He subsequently made the 8, got perfect on the 10, then drilled the 10 home for the game.  When he walked to the back of the table to set up the next rack, Rodney leaned forward and told him that he had pocketed the balls out of sequence.  The guy looked a little shocked and unsure of Rodney’s intent, but Rodney waved off his concerns and gave him the game to the amusement of the spectators.  I nodded to Rodney and said, “You have to admit though, it was one HELL of a run!”  He laughed and said, “Yes, it sure was!”

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