Is Random Racking a Reasonable Request in a Rack-Your-Own 9-Ball Match-up??

ChrisinNC

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Two players matching up playing 9-ball sets for a reasonable $$ per set. Both players are weak "A" or very strong "B" players, and are capable of running out at any time, or even stringing a few consecutive break & runs. As in our weekly tournaments, they are using a turtle template rack, racking high with the 9-ball on the spot, and racking their own balls. One player racks the balls totally random for his own breaks, and the other player has been pattern racking or whatever you want to call it - racking the balls in the exact same order in the rack every time, for his own breaks.

Not in the middle of a session, but it is reasonable request for the player who is not pattern racking to stipulate / request that starting the next session, his opponent needs to cease from pattern racking and start racking the balls randomly? The player who has been pattern racking claims it's a non issue and nothing more than excuses / complaints, but why would they be doing it if they didn't think it was giving them some advantage, and why wouldn't they agree to random rack for their own breaks if they are indeed claiming it is not giving them any advantage? Of course everything is negotiable in a head-up matchup, but does this not sound like a fairly reasonable request? Opinions?
 
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FeelDaShot

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Two players matching up playing 9-ball sets for a reasonable $$ per set. Both players are weak "A" or very strong "B" players, and are capable of running out at any time, or even stringing a few consecutive break & runs. As in our weekly tournaments, they are using a turtle template rack, racking high with the 9-ball on the spot, and racking their own balls. One player racks the balls totally random for his own breaks, and the other player has been pattern racking or whatever you want to call it - racking the balls in the exact same order in the rack every time, for his own breaks.

Not in the middle of a session, but it is reasonable request for the player who is not pattern racking to stipulate / request that starting the next session, his opponent needs to cease from pattern racking and start racking the balls randomly? The player who has been pattern racking claims it's a non issue and nothing more than excuses / complaints, but why would they be doing it if they didn't think it was giving them some advantage, and why wouldn't they agree to random rack for their own breaks if they are indeed claiming it is not giving them any advantage? Of course everything is negotiable in a head-up matchup, but does this not sound like a fairly reasonable request? Opinions?

Sure it's a reasonable request but it's just as reasonable to deny said request. Pattern racking, just like anything, is a skill. Whether you agree with it or not is besides the point. Why should your opponent be allowed to pick and choose which skills you're allowed to use?

For example, let's say one player is great at using a jump cue. Is it a reasonable request for the opponent to specify no jump cues? Sure, it's a reasonable request but that doesn't mean the request needs to be accepted since it changes the terms and affects the winning percentage of the match.

If the random racking request is denied, I suggest trying to pattern rack yourself. But like I said, it's a skill and you probably haven't mastered it yet.
 
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Icon of Sin

I can't fold, I need gold. I re-up and reload...
Silver Member
For example, let's say one player is great at using a jump cue. Is it a reasonable request for the opponent to specify no jump cues? Sure, it's a reasonable request but that doesn't mean the request needs to be accepted since it changes the terms and affects the winning percentage of the match.

If the random racking request is denied, I suggest trying to pattern rack yourself. But like I said, it's a skill and you probably haven't mastered it yet.

You have no idea how many times that I agreed to play someone a set of 9ball and I pull the jump cue out and they say, "you cant use a jump cue, I dont have one"...

Just because you dont have one doesnt mean I cant use mine.

To relate this to topic and as the last guy said, pattern racking is a skill that is learned. It's not something someone just has, if they took the time to learn it then they should be allowed to use it unless the tournament rules or tournament director says otherwise. If it is not allowed in the tournament, that needs to be communicated clearly before the tournament starts.
 

easy-e

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Nothing is unreasonable when negotiating a matchup. Always drives me crazy when people agree to terms and then someone says it wasn’t fair enough. Both parties should be happy when matching up.
 

tucson9ball

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Two players matching up playing 9-ball sets for a reasonable $$ per set. Both players are weak "A" or very strong "B" players, and are capable of running out at any time, or even stringing a few consecutive break & runs. As in our weekly tournaments, they are using a turtle template rack, racking high with the 9-ball on the spot, and racking their own balls. One player racks the balls totally random for his own breaks, and the other player has been pattern racking or whatever you want to call it - racking the balls in the exact same order in the rack every time, for his own breaks.

Not in the middle of a session, but it is reasonable request for the player who is not pattern racking to stipulate / request that starting the next session, his opponent needs to cease from pattern racking and start racking the balls randomly? The player who has been pattern racking claims it's a non issue and nothing more than excuses / complaints, but why would they be doing it if they didn't think it was giving them some advantage, and why wouldn't they agree to random rack for their own breaks if they are indeed claiming it is not giving them any advantage? Of course everything is negotiable in a head-up matchup, but does this not sound like a fairly reasonable request? Opinions?


By asking this, I would assume that the player pattern racking won the 1st set?
If I was the other guy, I would try to change things up a bit also, try to get the edge in my favor...why not?
When matching up, everything is negotiable.
If the guy that was not pattern racking won handily, he probably would leave it as is....just sayin.
 

jviss

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
What Rules?

I have to assume, based on the context of the question, that no particular set of rules was agreed to by the players. I say this because I have seen no 'official,' or widely accepted rule set that does not stipulate that other than the one ball and nine ball, the remainder of the balls are to be racked 'randomly,' or 'without purposeful or intentional pattern.' This eliminates pattern racking.

Eliminating pattern racking, either when self-racking or racking for one's opponent, is problematical, since there is no protocol to enforce random or pseudo-random arrangement of the balls. I have previously suggested that balls be drawn from an opaque bag in order of a pre-determined pattern in the rack, but I have never seen this done.

With a referee racking, or a supposedly disinterested third party, it's still problematical without a protocol, since we are all, as human beings, subject to conscious and unconscious bias.

It's not unreasonable to ask for no pattern racking. It's fraught with potential for argument. The simplest way to avoid contention is to allow it.

I favor random racking, but only if a protocol to ensure it, such as the one I suggest. This introduces one of the only true 'luck,' or 'chance' aspects into the game, not unlike shuffling the cards in poker.

On the contrary, one might ask for a specific pattern to be used every time, by both players.
 

Bic D

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Two players matching up playing 9-ball sets for a reasonable $$ per set. Both players are weak "A" or very strong "B" players, and are capable of running out at any time, or even stringing a few consecutive break & runs. As in our weekly tournaments, they are using a turtle template rack, racking high with the 9-ball on the spot, and racking their own balls. One player racks the balls totally random for his own breaks, and the other player has been pattern racking or whatever you want to call it - racking the balls in the exact same order in the rack every time, for his own breaks.

Not in the middle of a session, but it is reasonable request for the player who is not pattern racking to stipulate / request that starting the next session, his opponent needs to cease from pattern racking and start racking the balls randomly? The player who has been pattern racking claims it's a non issue and nothing more than excuses / complaints, but why would they be doing it if they didn't think it was giving them some advantage, and why wouldn't they agree to random rack for their own breaks if they are indeed claiming it is not giving them any advantage? Of course everything is negotiable in a head-up matchup, but does this not sound like a fairly reasonable request? Opinions?

It's certainly an advantage to me if I pattern rack for my opponent breaking. Why wouldn't be an advantage to pattern rack you own breaks?

If you had opponent racks and someone was pattern racking your guy...I bet he would have a problem.
 

tucson9ball

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I have to assume, based on the context of the question, that no particular set of rules was agreed to by the players. I say this because I have seen no 'official,' or widely accepted rule set that does not stipulate that other than the one ball and nine ball, the remainder of the balls are to be racked 'randomly,' or 'without purposeful or intentional pattern.' This eliminates pattern racking.

Eliminating pattern racking, either when self-racking or racking for one's opponent, is problematical, since there is no protocol to enforce random or pseudo-random arrangement of the balls. I have previously suggested that balls be drawn from an opaque bag in order of a pre-determined pattern in the rack, but I have never seen this done.

With a referee racking, or a supposedly disinterested third party, it's still problematical without a protocol, since we are all, as human beings, subject to conscious and unconscious bias.

It's not unreasonable to ask for no pattern racking. It's fraught with potential for argument. The simplest way to avoid contention is to allow it.

I favor random racking, but only if a protocol to ensure it, such as the one I suggest. This introduces one of the only true 'luck,' or 'chance' aspects into the game, not unlike shuffling the cards in poker.

On the contrary, one might ask for a specific pattern to be used every time, by both players.

These were two players matching up, not a tournament. BCAPL tournaments stipulate balls to be in a random order when racking.
 

jviss

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
These were two players matching up, not a tournament. BCAPL tournaments stipulate balls to be in a random order when racking.

Yes, I know that. But without deciding on a rule set beforehand, what rules are in force for every other situation? Is it just "common knowledge" kind of stuff? This wold eventually lead to controversy.

For example, cue ball fouls only, or all ball fouls?

If they didn't agree on a rule set beforehand, did they discuss and agree on pattern racking, or did this just come p when one guy started pattern racking? Isn't the default rule 'random?'
 

Meucciplayer

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Sorry, but this sounds stupid. Every rule set I know explicitly prohibits pattern racking - as others said before.

What would you do if your opponent did not hit a rail after contact and stated that this rule is not in effect - in the middle of a game/set?

I think that it should be obvious that if you want to rack in your favorite pattern this had to be agreed upon beforehand because practically everyone knows that this illegal in any serious tournament/rule set.

Else everyone makes their own set of rules as they please and as they go along.
 

MattPoland

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
The rules could use some elaboration. For example, a player racks the balls in random order except the 2-ball is always in the same place on a template rack, 9 on the spot, cut break, 1 in the side, soft break. You both know he’s intentionally placing it there but you also know he’s going to play dumb if you bring it up. It’s a no-win situation.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

gypsy_soul

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Two players matching up playing 9-ball sets for a reasonable $$ per set. Both players are weak "A" or very strong "B" players, and are capable of running out at any time, or even stringing a few consecutive break & runs. As in our weekly tournaments, they are using a turtle template rack, racking high with the 9-ball on the spot, and racking their own balls. One player racks the balls totally random for his own breaks, and the other player has been pattern racking or whatever you want to call it - racking the balls in the exact same order in the rack every time, for his own breaks.

Not in the middle of a session, but it is reasonable request for the player who is not pattern racking to stipulate / request that starting the next session, his opponent needs to cease from pattern racking and start racking the balls randomly? The player who has been pattern racking claims it's a non issue and nothing more than excuses / complaints, but why would they be doing it if they didn't think it was giving them some advantage, and why wouldn't they agree to random rack for their own breaks if they are indeed claiming it is not giving them any advantage? Of course everything is negotiable in a head-up matchup, but does this not sound like a fairly reasonable request? Opinions?





I'm just excited to come back to family billiards because I had no idea you had some A players there that like to play sets ! See you soon Chris !😎🎣 PS I think the pool room is called Family Billiards. It's been 10 years since I've been there !
 

jimmyco

NRA4Life
Gold Member
Silver Member
Since you say they are both capable of stringing consecutive break and runs, they must be playing winner breaks. The solution can be summed up in a word.

Win.
 

pt109

WO double hemlock
Gold Member
Silver Member
I don’t like being asked to do something randomly....it might be impossible...
...just for starters, the 1-ball and the 9-ball are not placed randomly.

My suggestion in any tournament where balls are not a part of the handicapping....
....everybody rack the balls in the same order.....

...........1
..........78
.........395
..........46
...........2

My buddy, the Greek, suggested this pattern from Joe Tucker....

...........1
..........36
.........895
..........24
...........7
 

pt109

WO double hemlock
Gold Member
Silver Member
Interesting, PT.

Have any tournaments implemented these suggestions?

I ran a bunch of tournaments in the 90s...
...but they were handicap tournaments using extra money balls....
...so you have to allow pattern racking where you rack the extra money balls safe.
 

SBC

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I'm only racking 3 of 4 balls to get what I want on a rack. Differences on the weight I'm giving or getting if they are ball spots. Different based on score or how I'm playing. Just the position of the 2 ball makes a big differenfe in getting easier racks to run or not. Rack your own or rack for your opponent, there is so much that can be done.
 

SBC

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It's certainly an advantage to me if I pattern rack for my opponent breaking. Why wouldn't be an advantage to pattern rack you own breaks?

If you had opponent racks and someone was pattern racking your guy...I bet he would have a problem.

You can rack for your opponent to make runouts harder if you are playing a better or equally or stong opponent.

If I'm playing a much weaker player I will give them easier pattern racks knowing they still spoil the out after 3 to 4 balls.

I would speculate a well written book on pattern racking could be 100 pages.

If a strong player can run out 20-30% of racks and their pattern increases that 10% more that's gonna be a extra couple racks over 3 or 4 sets which can make a difference in a winning or losing night.
 
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