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All hail Ruslan..... - 10-27-2019, 05:46 AM

Did this cat catch a gear this week or WHAT??? Wow. Impressive doesn't begin to describe his play at this event. His two turn destruction of Alex in the final was epic. The whole event was great with hi-level play on display everyday. I don't play it much but i learned a few moves that i have to go try out. Later folks................
  
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10-27-2019, 06:28 AM

Yes, his play was superb, but I'm taking it a step further.

It's no secret that Ruslan is among the world's straightest shooters. He has shown it for a few years now. I have watched him in the 14.1 challenge at Derby City numerous times. He has often used his special pocketing skills to produce long runs in 14.1, but has tended to get in and out of trouble.at times in managing the racks, recovering with otherworldly pocketing.

He put in one hell of a week in American 14.1 Championship, but found a new level in the final, not in pocketing but in technical excellence.

In the final, he played the game of 14.1 the way the old masters did.

Pattern Play
His patterns were very elegant and he, resultingly, rarely had any tricky layouts to navigate in the end rack. His pattern play in the final was reminiscent of the great Jim Rempe.

In the final, Ruslan observed some of the most basic principles of straight pool pattern play: a) clear the rails earlier rather than later, b) clear balls beneath the rack and those in the kitchen earlier rather than later, and c) save the balls that are productive in the end rack.

Attack Angles
Ruslan nearly always left the perfect angle on the primary break shot. He passed on some inferior secondary break shots and proceeded to find shape onto something that had better prospects. He used the right stroke and speed selections on the break shots to accomplish two things: a) hitting the most productive part of the pack/cluster to spread the balls and b) ensuring that the cue ball angle off the pack/cluster was a productive one.

In this regard, it's worth comparing the play of Ruslan to that of another player who shined with glowing excellence in the American 14.1 Championship --- namely third place finisher Marco Teutshcer. Marco's often inferior attack angles in the semifinal caused him to have to navigate difficult positions. To his credit, he nearly always worked his way out of trouble, but he demonstrated how much harder you have to work when your attack angles aren't best.

Conclusion
It is easy for the untrained eye to marvel in the excellence of anyone who gets to 175 in two innings, but Ruslan's effort in the final was a shining example of technical excellence as much a display of superior pocketing. During the final, commentator Mika Immonen found himself saying "that was textbook" several times, and with good reason!

Last edited by sjm; 10-27-2019 at 06:33 AM.
  
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10-27-2019, 08:22 AM

He definitely has a knack for this game and he makes shots.
I was a little surprised about the re-rack at the beginning of the match.
My interpretation is that a re-rack is optional only after a "breaking foul".
Alex drove two balls and the cue to rails and then scratched. The rules
don't seem to specify that as a "breaking foul". Or am I missing something?
  
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Rules
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Rules - 10-27-2019, 08:36 AM

4.10 Breaking Foul

A breaking foul is penalized by the loss of two points as mentioned under 4.3 Opening Break Shot, as well as a possible re-break. If both a standard foul and a breaking foul happen on one shot, it is considered a breaking foul.

A scratch is a standard foul.
  
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Rules - 10-27-2019, 08:58 AM

6.6 OPENING BREAK

Starting player must either (1) designate a ball and a pocket into which that ball will be pocketed and accomplish the shot, or (2) cause the cue ball to contact a ball and then a cushion, plus cause two object balls to contact a cushion. Failure to meet at least one of the above requirements is a breaking violation. Offenderís score is assessed a 2-point penalty for each breaking violation. In addition, the opponent has the choice of (1) accepting the table in position, or (2) having the balls re-racked and requiring the offending player to repeat the opening break. That choice continues until the opening break is not a breaking violation, or until the opponent accepts the table in position. The three successive fouls rule does not apply to breaking violations. If the starting player scratches on a legal opening break, he is charged with a foul and assessed a one point penalty, which applies toward the "Successive Fouls Penalties". The incoming player is awarded cue ball in hand behind the head string, with object balls in position. q
  
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10-27-2019, 12:31 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by rh1919 View Post
I was a little surprised about the re-rack at the beginning of the match.
My interpretation is that a re-rack is optional only after a "breaking foul".
Alex drove two balls and the cue to rails and then scratched. The rules
don't seem to specify that as a "breaking foul". Or am I missing something?
That bugged me too, and I think they racked in error. Not a huge deal though, I don't think it changed much with regard to the end result.
  
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10-27-2019, 12:43 PM

So much for hailing Ruslan. This thread has gone off on a tangent that has absolutely nothing to do with Ruslan's exceptional performance.

Maybe I'll have to hail him a second time. Well played, Ruslan/
  
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10-27-2019, 01:41 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by sjm View Post
So much for hailing Ruslan. This thread has gone off on a tangent that has absolutely nothing to do with Ruslan's exceptional performance.

Maybe I'll have to hail him a second time. Well played, Ruslan/
You were the one who brought up the "textbook play" comment by Mika. It obviously
wasn't by the textbook. And it is appalling to me that it could happen in a World Championship tournament, let alone the World Championship match.
Look at the tape. Ruslan had no shot after the first break, but did on the second break.
Ruslan played great, but you have to have a shot to get started, and rules are rules.
  
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10-27-2019, 02:07 PM

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Originally Posted by sjm View Post
In the final, he played the game of 14.1 the way the old masters did.
Ruslan's play was a reminder of how beautiful straight pool can be. Amazing.

Question for SJM: In the past, say, 20 years, have you seen a more dominant, and as you say elegant, performance in a straight pool tournament?

What a week Ruslan had!
  
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Pretty!
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Pretty! - 10-27-2019, 03:55 PM

I haven't watched anything but the finals but they were sure pretty! It was Ruslan's day and I doubt seriously that Alex could have derailed him. Hopefully this ignites his career.

Hu
  
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10-27-2019, 04:03 PM

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Originally Posted by MitchDAZB View Post
Ruslan's play was a reminder of how beautiful straight pool can be. Amazing.

Question for SJM: In the past, say, 20 years, have you seen a more dominant, and as you say elegant, performance in a straight pool tournament?

What a week Ruslan had!
You cannot say Ruslan was dominant in the event. He was dominant in the final in spades, and yes, it was one of the more impressive single match performances of the last twenty years.

About five years ago, Appleton ran 200 and out in the Dragon 14.1 event in a run of great technical elegance. I witnessed that run.

In the Dragon 14.1 event in, I'm guessing, 2010 at Comet Billiards in New Jersey, Oliver Ortmann ran 125 and out in three consecutive matches. Yes, I was there for that tournament, too. These were races to 125 and Ortmann went 375 balls without a miss against three different opponents on three different tables.

Perhaps even more amazing was a performance for which I was not present, namely Thorsten Hohmann's effort at the 2005 European Straight Pool Championships, in which he averaged about 50 balls per inning for the entire event on the way to victory,

Others can chime in and add to, or disagree with, these choices but for me, those were the best performances in 14.1 in recent times.

Last edited by sjm; 10-27-2019 at 05:32 PM.
  
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10-27-2019, 04:47 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by mfinkelstein3 View Post
6.6 OPENING BREAK

Starting player must either (1) designate a ball and a pocket into which that ball will be pocketed and accomplish the shot, or (2) cause the cue ball to contact a ball and then a cushion, plus cause two object balls to contact a cushion. Failure to meet at least one of the above requirements is a breaking violation. Offenderís score is assessed a 2-point penalty for each breaking violation. In addition, the opponent has the choice of (1) accepting the table in position, or (2) having the balls re-racked and requiring the offending player to repeat the opening break. That choice continues until the opening break is not a breaking violation, or until the opponent accepts the table in position. The three successive fouls rule does not apply to breaking violations. If the starting player scratches on a legal opening break, he is charged with a foul and assessed a one point penalty, which applies toward the "Successive Fouls Penalties". The incoming player is awarded cue ball in hand behind the head string, with object balls in position. q
Sometimes, we probably need to be reminded that (much like accepting the 16 point penalty for an intentional 3rd consecutive foul), it is likely always better to ‘bite the bullet’ and repeatedly commit a breaking violation than to disturb the rack (thus making something dead) or leave any makable shot to someone capable of running 150 & out.
  
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10-27-2019, 04:55 PM

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Originally Posted by sjm View Post
You cannot say Ruslan was dominant in the event. He was dominant in the final in spades, and yes, it was one of the more impressive single match performances of the last twenty years.

About five years ago, Appleton ran 200 and out in the Dragon 14.1 event in a run of great technical elegance. I witnessed that run.

In the Dragon 14.1 event in, I'm guessing, 2010 at Comet Billiards in New Jersey, Oliver Ortmann ran 125 and out in three consecutive matches. Yes, I was there for that tournament, too.

Perhaps even more amazing was a performance for which I was not present, namely Thorsten Hohmann's effort at the 2005 European Straight Pool Championships, in which he averaged about 50 balls per inning for the entire event on the way to victory,

Others can chime in and add to, or disagree with, these choices but for me, those were the best performances in 14.1 in recent times.
Yes I would agree with your assessments on more recent dominant 14.1 performances. I also witnessed the Appleton 200 run and the Ortmann performance in NJ. this was when I lived up North. I also was in CHICAGO IN1989 at the US OPEN 14.1 which Ortmann burst on the scene in the U.S to take that tournament. I believe that I saw Seigel run 150 and out against Rempe that year too.
  
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10-27-2019, 05:23 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by sjm View Post
You cannot say Ruslan was dominant in the event.
Me thinks I just did(!). Hail Ruslan!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sjm View Post
About five years ago, Appleton ran 200 and out in the Dragon 14.1 event in a run of great technical elegance. I witnessed that run.
That was a fantastic semi-final match. Understandably taxed by that effort, he lost the final, as I recall.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sjm View Post
In the Dragon 14.1 event in, I'm guessing, 2010 at Comet Billiards in New Jersey, Oliver Ortmann ran 125 and out in three consecutive matches. Yes, I was there for that tournament, too.
This performance by Ortmann was the one that came to mind for me, too. I can't remember, do he go on to win the event? I could be mistaken, but I didn't think so.

Quote:
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Perhaps even more amazing was a performance for which I was not present, namely Thorsten Hohmann's effort at the 2005 European Straight Pool Championships, in which he averaged about 50 balls per inning for the entire event on the way to victory,
Yes, I would be interested to hear from our European friends re: comparing Ruslan's week with the many European Championship titles by the likes of Feijen, Souquet, Ortmann, Hohmann, Engert, van den Berg, etc.

Hail Ruslan!
  
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10-27-2019, 05:30 PM

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Originally Posted by MitchDAZB View Post
This performance by Ortmann was the one that came to mind for me, too. I can't remember, do he go on to win the event? I could be mistaken, but I didn't think so.
Ortmann lost in the semifinals that year. Stephan Cohen won the title, rallying from over 100 balls behind to beat Mika Immonen in the final.
  
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