Bank pool

Bank pool

Bank pool is a Pocket billiards game that has as it most fundamental requirement, that all scoring shots in the game to be made by Cuegloss|Bank shot|banking a called ball off a Cuegloss|Cushion|cushion and into a called pocket. While the game has multiple variations, the predominant version through much of its history was played with a full fifteen-ball Cuegloss|Rack|rack, of which the winning player was required to legally pocket eight balls. A shortened version of the game using nine balls of which the players must legally pocket five for the win, often called "nine-ball banks," gained popularity in the 1990s and 2000s and is the subject of international professional competition and televised matches.



The object of the game is simple: to be the first player to Cuegloss|Bank shot|bank five balls in any order (or eight balls, when played with a full rack).


The balls are racked in nine-ball formation (or eight-ball formation if using a full rack), but in no particular order.


The key rule is that all shots must be banked (Cuegloss|Cue ball|cue ball to Cuegloss|Object ball|object ball, then object ball to one or more Cuegloss|Cushion|cushions on the way to the Cuegloss|Pocket|pocket).

Bank pool is one of the "cleanest" (no "Cuegloss|Slop|slop") pool games — no Cuegloss|Kick shot|kick shots (the object ball must be hit directly with the cueball, without hitting the rail first); no Cuegloss|Combination shot|combinations (shots must be cue ball to the object ball, then object ball to the called pocket, and the shooter must call both the ball and pocket); and the object ball cannot hit another ball on the way to the pocket (no Cuegloss|Kiss|kiss shots).


The shooter "owes" the table a ball if he/she fouls — a previously pocketed ball (if any) must be Cuegloss|Spot|spotted. Any ball pocketed on a Cuegloss|Foul|foul is spotted in addition to the ball owed. If the cue ball is Cuegloss|Scratch|scratched (pocketed or knocked off the table), it is a foul, and the cue ball must be Cuegloss|Spot|spotted behind the Cuegloss|Head string|head string (i.e., in the "Cuegloss|Kitchen|kitchen"). Any balls that were sunk on that shot are spotted. If the shooter has not already legally pocketed a ball at the time of the foul, a ball is "still owed", which must be spotted after the Cuegloss|Inning|inning in which it was legally pocketed. If the shooter makes a legal bank shot and another ball goes in accidentally, it is not a foul, but that extra ball is spotted after the inning. It is also a foul if the shooter does not hit the "Cuegloss|Call shot|called" object ball and drive it or the cue ball to a cushion or pocket the object ball (this is similar to but different from nine-ball and standardized eight-ball, in which "any" ball may contact a rail after the object-ball hit to avoid fouling). In many areas, fouling three times during successive turns means a loss of Cuegloss|Game|game, but that rule may often be ignored in local amateur play. A stricter variant preferred by some is that even three non-consecutive fouls is a loss of game. Players typically make sure the rules are clear and agreed-upon before play begins, especially when gambling.

External links

* [ Simplified bank pool rules, at BilliardsForum] — non-authoritative

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