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Question
Is there a rule against chipping the cue ball over the eight ball in order to hit the target ball if you are snookered?

Deirdre.

Answer
Hi Deirdre.

I assume by "chipping" you are referring to the golf term equivalent of what is called in pool a "jump". If I am correct, then it is perfectly legal to perform a jump shot at any time in the game and it does not make any difference if the ball jumped over is the 8 ball. However, most people do no know how to jump properly and perform illegal jumps when trying to do so.

Jumping by scooping under the ball to fling it into the air (in fact, something rather equivalent to chipping in golf) is absolutely illegal in all authoritative rule sources. This is because, at least in part, it is foul to intentionally have the ferrule of the cue (the white part below the tip) come into contact with the ball, which happens on these scoops.

A legal jump shot is performed by driving the cue ball down into the bed of the table and forcing it to jump into the air by rebounding from the bed of the table. It is a fairly advanced shot, and many people have never seen anyone jump in this correct manner--most bar players haven't.

A slow motion video of a legal jump shot can be found here: http://www.engr.colostate.edu/~dga/pool/high_speed_videos/HSV7-23.htm

A similar video showing an illegal, scooping jump shot is shown here: http://www.engr.colostate.edu/~dga/pool/high_speed_videos/new/HSVA-1.htm

So the answer to your question is there is no rule against jumping over the 8 ball, but with the caveat that any jump shot is illegal unless performed legally, and most people do not know how to perform a legal jump shot.

Best of luck,

Pool Teacher  

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I have wide ranging knowledge of all the cue sports, with the exception of snooker. I can answer most questions related to playing any of the standard games such as straight pool (14.1 continuous) eight-ball, nine-ball, one-pocket and 3-cushion billiards and the variations on these games. Questions welcomed regarding technique, strategy and rules, history of the sport, trick shots, the mental game, practice, practice drills, pool/billiards publications, and so on. I DO NOT DO CUE OR TABLE APPRAISALS OR IDENTIFICATION. See below.

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I have been a dedicated player of pool and 3-cushion Billiards for many years. I have given lessons professionally and have run and participated in too many tournaments to name, including professional events such as the U.S. Open. I am also a cue collector and student of all aspects of the game. Note: I was starting to get far too many questions about pool cue (and pool table) valuation and identification and will no longer take these questions, sorry. I am a player and historian of the sport and the heart of my expertise is not product comparison or appraisal.

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