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  • Writer's pictureDesiree Dominguez

10 Ball Rules

THE LAG 1. The player who wins the lag chooses who will break the first rack.


2. The object balls are racked as tightly as possible in a triangle shape, with the one ball at the top and on the spot, the ten ball in the middle and the two ball and three ball at the bottom outer corners. The other balls will be placed in the rack without purposeful or intentional pattern.


THE BREAK 3. The cue ball begins in hand behind the head string; and

a) if no ball is pocketed, at least four object balls must be driven to one or more rails and past the side pocket, or the shot is a foul.

b) The ten ball does NOT count in any pocket on the break.


4. If no foul is committed on the break shot, the shooter may choose to shoot a "push out" as his shot. He MUST make his intention known to his opponent.


5. Whenever the shooter is attempting to pocket a ball (except the break) he is required to call shot and pocket if they are not obvious.

6. Banks, combinations, and similar shots, the shooter should indicate the ball and pocket. If the referee or opponent is unsure of the shot to be played, he may ask for a call.

7. The shooter, after the break may at any time call "safety" which permits him to make legal contact with the legal object ball without pocketing a ball. However, if the shooter pockets the legal object ball or any other ball the incoming player has the option to play the shot as left, or give it back to his opponent.

8. If a player misses his intended ball and pocket, and either makes the nominated ball in the wrong pocket or pockets another ball, his turn has finished and the incoming player has the option to take the shot as-is, or give it back to his opponent.

9. If the ten ball is pocketed on a foul, a push out, during the break, without calling it, accidentally in the wrong pocket, or driven off the table, it is spotted. No other object ball is ever spotted.

10. If the shooter commits a standard foul, play passes to his opponent. The cue ball is in hand, and the incoming player may place it anywhere on the playing surface.

11. Three consecutive fouls is penalized by loss of the current rack.

12. Jump cues no less than 40 inches are allowed.


13. Cue ball scratch or off the table.

14. Wrong ball first: The first object ball contacted by the cue ball on each shot must be the lowest numbered ball remaining on the table

15. No rail after contact

16. No foot on the floor

17. Ball driven off the table. The only jumped object ball that is spotted is the nine.

18. Double hit / frozen balls

19. Playing out of turn

20. Hitting another ball during the shot, which as a result changes or crosses the path of the cue ball

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