By Eric “The Preacher” Yow!
This issue I want to teach you to shoot a shot that comes up every now and again, but is often overlooked. There are occasions where your cue ball will be frozen to a ball, in this case one of your own. It is difficult to decide how to proceed because you must make a legal hit on a ball and since you are frozen, many opponents will accuse you of a double-kiss if you shoot through the ball. In my diagrammed shots, the cue ball is frozen to the object ball. When these instances come up and you choose to shoot through the ball, make sure your opponent checks that they are frozen to assure that there will be no double-kiss. If they are even 1mm apart, when shooting through the ball, you invariably double-kiss and foul on the shot.
Most people understand how to shoot through a ball but few can accurately calculate the cue ball’s path. This is something I call “splitting tangents.” In my illustration, take the line of resistance to the side pocket and the desired line to the object ball and make a V with the two vectors. Your aim point is going to be a vector that bisects that angle. This is a rough estimate, for today’s purposes, since there is more physics involved than this simple geometry, but play with it and you’ll get the hang of it. (This comes in handy in 9-ball when you’re frozen on the one with the nine hanging!)
If you can split a tangent with a level cue, can you not also split tangents with your Eric Yow Jump Cue? Of course! It adds a third dimension, elevation, but it’s easy to get the hang of, particularly if you have a Yow! Jump Cue. My signature jump cues have a black phenolic tip and a stainless steel ferrule, making jump shots particularly easier to accomplish and to do so with accuracy and precision. In the bottom example depicted, take the angle created by the resistance line and the desired line to the far corner pocket. Split that angle in your mind and prepare for a jump shot at about 40 degrees of elevation. I use a dart stroke. You will have to hit a little harder than usual because of the resistance of the frozen ball, though not by much if you’re using a Yow! Jump Cue. Your aim point may be a little farther or shorter than you estimate, depending on the way you stroke your jump shots. But, shoot directly through the ball and watch the cue ball travel down table to make the ball in the corner. A little inside spin will help it hug the long rail if it comes in short.
A fun shot is when you are closer to the blocker balls, top left, and you must hold the cue ball for a shot on the next ball. Splitting the tangent, use more elevation with low-left English, hitting it a bit harder to maintain the requisite spin. Nail this shot with your Yow! Jump Cue and your opponent will definitely give you the 8!