Avoided the choke!

Andrew Manning

Aspiring know-it-all
Silver Member
I played a real set of 9-ball last night, and I won it!

Background: I play for money a little bit, but I'm no gambler. If I bet $20, it's either because I'm already up $20, or because the set is long enough that I believe I'm going to get my $20 worth out of it, win or lose. Generally, due to my extremely low tolerance for actually losing any money, I choke a lot. Play like a champion for 3 or 4 shots, and miss the next straight-in easy ball like I'd never picked up a cue before.

Last night I played a 9-ball race to 7 for $50, as an educational experience (you could really call it a test) more than anything. My opponent was a guy who has historically always beaten me.

I played sound 9-ball, but my opponent is good and my safeties aren't great. He got the hill first, with me at 5. The next rack he scratched leaving me the 8 and 9, both hangers.

Hill-hill, I broke and made a ball, got a good roll on the 1, and ran out! All the way out! Didn't miss the 4, didn't bang the 7 into the rail, didn't blow shape on the 9, but ran the **** out! It felt damn good.

It's not unusual for me to run out when I make a good break and have a good shot on the 1. But it's been highly unusual for me to put 8 pocketed shots + 8 positional successes together in row under any real pressure. I think I'll try to make a habit of it.



Sea Player
Silver Member
Avoiding the choke comes with experience (from what I've heard). Keep putting some pressure on yourself and you'll be more relaxed and focused when those high pressure situations come around.


AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I'm sittin' here reading your thread and my heart started thumping and my adrenaline started flowing. What a high. You confronted your fears and conquered them. Oh yeah. you beat the man and won 50 bucks.
I'm not quite sure which is more important. He'll never be able to dominate you again. Huevos Grande !


Who me ?
Silver Member
Use it for what its worth, you beat a guy under pressure who you have played several times. Don't go out and start woofin at anybody and everybody just yet ! :D

Its is a great feeling to get out when you need to though :)


AzB Silver Member
Silver Member

And you touched on what is one of the big appeals of pool (and cycling, I guess) to me: not asking for the win, TAKING IT. I like that feeling and you know what? It feels just as good every time!


AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I remember once when I almost broke and ran out a rack, then I remembered I wasn't any good at pool.