View Full Version : APA rule clarification? - coaching

05-15-2003, 04:19 PM
Coaching section - rule book states that there is a limit on coachings so "that coaching does not cause excessive delays in the progress of a match" Reading on it says in bold: "taking too many coachings will not be considered a violation of the rules, although consistent attempts to take too many coachings may result in a sportsmanship violation". "It is up to you to notify your opponent if he is taking a coaching he does not have coming."

My league operator and APA responsded that the word "taking" means asking. As in - it's not a violation to ask for too many coachings.
That's ridiculous! Taking and asking are different. If that is what is meant then print that! If it is not, then players are allowed to RECEIVE more coachings.

05-16-2003, 10:47 AM
Here is a situation that happened to me:
My player took a coaching with me. I didn't pay attention, and when she received ball in hand late in the game, I called time out and picked up the cue ball. I didn't start talking to her yet. The other team claimed that it was a foul since she didn't have the time out coming. I said that it is not a foul, since she had ball in hand anyway. I referred to the rule in the book you mention. It is not a foul in any way. I simply forgot-I wasn't trying to sneak another coaching in. It was a one time thing, and that was that.

My league operator of course felt the same as me. Even if I had given her instructions, it still wouldn't have been a foul. The point is that I legitimately forgot, and I didn't try to do it again. I think the rules are clear about this.


Jude Rosenstock
05-19-2003, 10:51 PM
You're asking two different questions here so I'm gonna have to break it down a little.

Can a player ask for coaches more then once?

Yes, so long as by asking for a coach, they're not receiving information from the other team.

Can a player take more coaches then the rules allow? No. A player is only allowed one coach if they are above a 3. Two coaches if they're a 3 or below. Taking a coach that is in excess of their allotted share is not allowed, even though there is no written penalty for doing such. If your opponent takes a coach they're not allowed, it is up to you to inform them that they have exceeded their allowance. If they continue to do this in flagrant violation of the rules, they can be subject to sportsmanship violations by the league director after the match has taken place.

Basically, there's little to read between the lines here. It's in plain and simple English. If you try and work out a way of getting around it, you're liable to get burned by the league director. If you know someone who is doing just that, I'd suggest complaining to you're regional L.D. or contacted St. Louis to get an appriate response.


Walt in VA
05-22-2003, 09:21 AM
Absolutely right - if your opponent or their coach asks for an extra timeout, it's never a foul, but it's up to you to inform them they don't have one coming. The easiest way to handle this is to have your scorekeeper mark each timeout with a mark (I use a tiny "T") at the top or bottom, as appropriate, of the game box. Saves arguments (especially in playoffs or tournaments) and they may really have forgotten how many they've had.

Walt in VA

05-23-2003, 06:58 PM
Thanks - I appreciate the responses. I guess maybe I have trouble with the way the rule is written. Jude replied that it is plain & simple English with little to read between the lines. I disagree: the rule says "taking too many coachings is not a violation of the rules" (it does not say anything about "asking", it says "taking") in your 4th paragraph you say the opposite, that you can't take more. You said that I asked two questions, I never asked if you can ask for more timeouts - I don't think that matters, of course you can. I'm stating that the rules say you can take more. They don't say mention anything about if you can ask for more. If the APA worded it wrong than change it, if not, we should play the way the rules are written.

Walt in VA
05-23-2003, 08:14 PM
I'll agree to the extent that "taking too many coachings will not be considered a violation of the rules" is somewhat ambiguous; however,as Jude R. pointed out, the allowable number of coachings per skill level is clearly stated earlier in the rules. That's what you play by. If your opponent attempts to take more after you point out that they have exceeded the allowable number, reporting them to the L.O. may result in a sportsmanship violation, with penalties running to loss of match(es) or more.

The intent of this section is to stop teams from claiming BIH if the opponents forget and try to take an extra coach. If you stop them as soon as they say "Time Out," most teams will agree, "OK, forgot about that other one, you're right" and no harm is done.

If they persist after you show them that you've been marking timeouts and they're over, write them up on the scoresheet or contact the L.O. They'll handle it appropriately.

Walt in VA

Jude Rosenstock
05-25-2003, 09:40 PM
Junior, if you were to examine the BCA rule book, I think you can get an idea of how detailed the rules can be for this game and even the BCA rule book occasionally fails to address some circumstances that arise in common play.

My point is, the APA relies on common sense and the general rules of pocket billiards. Unfortunately, for some people, this isn't enough and they insist that everything needs to be worded out appropriately.

All I can say is, after over two dozen matches in team post-season play, with experience in Las Vegas, NV under the highest scrutiny, I can assure you that the spirit of the rules must remain intact. You are allowed only the alloted amount of coaches per game. If, in any way or form, a person tries to expand on that number, they take the risk of penalties beyond the scope of that mere game and in some instances, could risk their membership in the APA.

An example would be a player who has already taken their time out and is about to shoot the eight-ball in a pocket their teammates strongly disagree with. If the coach asks the player if he'd like to take a time-out, this could be contrued as a coach and frankly, he better have one available. Of course, there are legitimate mistakes but as we all know, some circumstances are more obvious then others.

When looking over any given rule, ask yourself this: What is the APA trying to accomplish? What are they trying to create/prevent? Does the issue I raise contradict their goal or is it an entirely seperate issue?

The problem I have with your situation is that it contradicts the intention of the rule in question. In Las Vegas, the only time a player can even speak to their coach is when a time-out has been called. There is no dialog about whether a coach should be taken or not. There is no sideline conversation while the other person is shooting. The match strictly takes place between two players with intervention only occuring for the duration of one minute per game (two for players ranked lower then 4) and only during that announced time-out may any sort of advice be relayed to the player.

Constant dialog about whether a time-out should be given or not can be seen as advice. If a player has the choice of shooting a ball in one pocket or another, the coach can ask if they'd like to take a time out, hence making the shooter reconsider what they're about to do.

Be careful with your strict interpretation of the rules. I can assure you that there are many LO's and referees that will not see it your way. Trust me, we've all tried that one already!