WHY DID EFREN DO THAT? … Out of 33 Options

dr_dave

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This is a follow-up to my previous thread: TOP 10 EFREN REYES FAMOUS SHOTS ... And How to Shoot Them.

My previous video featured the Top 10 Most Famous Shots from Efren Bata “The Magician” Reyes. One of the shots (Shot 9) generated some interesting discussion here and on social media. Efren used a drag shot with inside spin to pocket the 7 and bump into the 8. In this video, I demonstrates 33 different shot options and try to explain what Efren was thinking and whether or not he made the right choice. Of course, he did. Check it out:


Here's the list of the shots [with YouTube timestamp links]:
Table of Contents:
- Intro [0:00]
1. go up and down the table for the 8 in the side [0:47]
2. go up and down the table for the 8 in the lower corner [1:42]
3. use outside spin off four rails for the 8 in the lower corner [2:30]
4. use outside spin off three rails for the 8 in the upper corner [3:19]
5. use outside spin off three rails for the 8 in the side [3:34]
6. use lots of inside to go two rails for the 8 in the side [3:55]
7. use a touch of inside for the 8 in the upper corner [4:38]
8. use a little inside to bump the 8 toward the lower corner [4:54]
9. use more inside to go two rails for the 8 in the upper corner [6:08]
10. use even more inside to go two rails to bump the 8 [6:42]
11. use lots of inside to go off two rails to hold for the 8 in the lower corner [7:12]
12. kick the 7 to the bottom corner [7:37]
13. kick the 7 to the right side [7:51]
14. kick the 7 safe [8:12]
15. bank the 7 safe [8:32]
16. carom off one rail into the 9 [8:44]
17. carom off two rails into the 9 [9:37]
18. kick off two rails and carom into the 9 [9:50]
19. bank the 7 toward the 9 [10:06]
20. bank the 7 two rails toward the 9 [10:23]
21. double-kiss herd the 7 into the corner [10:47]
22-32. crazy options [11:00]
33. the craziest option: double kiss the CB off one rail to pocket the 9 [13:00]
- Wrap Up [13:27]
---- answer to the question: Why Did Efren Do That? [13:49]
---- shot montage [14:33]

As always, I look forward to your feedback, comments, questions, complaints, and requests.

Enjoy,
Dave
 
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dr_dave

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- Wrap Up [13:27]
---- answer to the question: Why Did Efren Do That? [13:49]
What did you guys think of my summary explaining why Efren chose the shot he did? I now believe he meant to send the the CB toward the 8, just like he did, knowing that good things could happen either if he bumped the 8 or went past it (for a two-way shot). Do you guys agree?

Thanks,
Dave
 

34YearsOfPlayin

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I think that Efren could have shot it anyway and still won the game. I think that he chose that particular shot because 1) english is easy for him to use and that he didn't want to a tough cut on the next shot (would have to relied on speed control more otherwise). Again it was just because he didnt want to cut his next shot. although he could have if he wanted to. And if he screwed up well he still probably would have gotten out. Was it smartest shot. I guess it really depends on your style of play. Someone whos style of game relies more on center ball shots definately would have faired better with a different shot. Probably being follow and shooting the object ball into the same pocket as the prior shot.

I agree with your analysis of why he chose the shot as well. (Not a lot could of gone wrong with that shot. The odds were in his favor)
 
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Geosnookery

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Ronnie O’Sullivan often answers questions with variations of two responses. The first is: Depends who I’m playing. The other is: I just felt like it.

The former is what is often lacking in pool instruction but front and centre in Snooker (and football, tennis, hockey, etc,). The opponent’s strengths vs weaknesses... my own strengths...psychology, etc.

Who Is Efren playing? What was the score? If I was playing Efren and he made that shot, I’d be a little in awe and intimidated. It might throw a player like Strickland off his game but not rattle a player like CJ Wiley. Ronnie O'Sullivan talks about playing like a mechanical robot if playing John Higgins but trying to mess with Ali Carter’s head early in the game.
Too many other variables concerning the opponent to get into.

Then there is ‘I felt like it’. Was this a difficult match for Efren? Was he far ahead? Top players are human and can get bored, show off etc.

Also, we don’t know the table. We’ve all played on tables that have a rail that either in reality or just in our head doesn’t seem to react right. A dead spot but we aren’t ‘sure’. Good players read the table. They aren’t distracted when opponents are playing but study the cloth, rails, etc.

Finally, Efren, like most superheroes is flawed. He might respond by saying. ‘Yes, that would have been a better choice.’
 

alstl

AzB Silver Member
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Efren has a habit of putting his cue on the table sometimes to show where he wants to land the cue ball. I think he wanted to come back down table and play the 8 in the same cornet pocket as the 7. Highly unlikely he intended to run into the 8 because that and a scratch are the only way he doesn't end up with a shot. When you shoot as pure as Efren you get rewarded.
 

dr_dave

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Efren has a habit of putting his cue on the table sometimes to show where he wants to land the cue ball. I think he wanted to come back down table and play the 8 in the same cornet pocket as the 7. Highly unlikely he intended to run into the 8 because that and a scratch are the only way he doesn't end up with a shot. When you shoot as pure as Efren you get rewarded.
I also think he was trying to go between the 8 and the side for a two-way shot as I describe at the 6:08 and 13:27 points in the video.
 
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dr_dave

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He's a balkline champ as well; just can't tell with ER.
Efren is not only the GOAT pool player, he is also the MWROAT (Most Well Rounded Of All Time) pool player in terms of diverse skills and background.
 

Cornerman

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Efren has a habit of putting his cue on the table sometimes to show where he wants to land the cue ball. I think he wanted to come back down table and play the 8 in the same cornet pocket as the 7. Highly unlikely he intended to run into the 8 because that and a scratch are the only way he doesn't end up with a shot. When you shoot as pure as Efren you get rewarded.
I think that the moment he pointed with his cue to the right, he knew he missed his path. My best educated guess would be that he wanted to go around the 8-ball and shoot it up table. If he had missed the 7-ball oN the professional side, he would have been safe.
 
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Cornerman

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1605447767679.png

And he did this just before the shot. He definitely was looking to place the cue ball below the 8-ball.
 

dr_dave

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I think that the moment he pointed with his cue to the right, he knew he missed his path. My best educated guess would be that he wanted to go around the 8-ball and shoot it up table. If he had missed the 7-ball oN the professional side, he would have been safe.
I agree, based on my explanation at the 6:08 point in my video.
 

sjm

Sweating it at Derby City
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All good points. I'll just add that there is one extra merit of playing this shot with inside not yet considered. The two way shot possibilities , for the most part, were all covered in the video, but there's the one extra chance for a defensive result. Specifically, if Efren whiffs the seven completely (a legitimate possibility on a long thin cut with English even for a pro) at the speed he hit it, he might get a kick safe leaving the cue ball on the top rail and the seven in an unfavorable position. Intentionally playing this kick safe was considered in the video, but the fact that it might result from a miss is a subtle attribute of this shot. A whiff with outside English will sell out the rack.

By the way, no way Efren intentionally ran into the eight.
 

dr_dave

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All good points. I'll just add that there is one extra merit of playing this shot with inside not yet considered. The two way shot possibilities , for the most part, were all covered in the video, but there's the one extra chance for a defensive result. Specifically, if Efren whiffs the seven completely (a legitimate possibility on a long thin cut with English even for a pro) at the speed he hit it, he might get a kick safe leaving the cue ball on the top rail and the seven in an unfavorable position. Intentionally playing this kick safe was considered in the video, but the fact that it might result from a miss is a subtle attribute of this shot. A whiff with outside English will sell out the rack.

By the way, no way Efren intentionally ran into the eight.
Good point about the extra two-way benefit. Concerning intentionally hitting the 8, I agree; but as I pointed out in the Wrap Up section (at 13:28) and throughout the video, there are two-way benefits to missing the 8 on either side, and even bumping the 8 will leave a good result more often than not.

Thanks for the comments,
Dave
 

sjm

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Good point about the extra two-way benefit. Concerning intentionally hitting the 8, I agree; but as I pointed out in the Wrap Up section (at 13:28) and throughout the video, there are two-way benefits to missing the 8 on either side, and even bumping the 8 will leave a good result more often than not.

Thanks for the comments,
Dave
Good thread here, Dave, because there are so many ingredients in making the toughest decisions at the table. Over the years, I've heard some very capable players argue for outside English on this kind of shot. Their reasoning is that the pro side miss is the overcut and that an overcut is more likely on a shot like this when outside English is used. It's not a baseless argument, but I feel this slight benefit is far smaller than the many benefits offered by using inside English here.
 

dr_dave

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Good thread here, Dave, because there are so many ingredients in making the toughest decisions at the table. Over the years, I've heard some very capable players argue for outside English on this kind of shot. Their reasoning is that the pro side miss is the overcut and that an overcut is more likely on a shot like this when outside English is used. It's not a baseless argument, but I feel this slight benefit is far smaller than the many benefits offered by using inside English here.
Another good point to consider.

Thanks again,
Dave
 

dr_dave

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Good thread here, Dave, because there are so many ingredients in making the toughest decisions at the table. Over the years, I've heard some very capable players argue for outside English on this kind of shot. Their reasoning is that the pro side miss is the overcut and that an overcut is more likely on a shot like this when outside English is used. It's not a baseless argument, but I feel this slight benefit is far smaller than the many benefits offered by using inside English here.
Obviously, the "right choice" depends so much on the player, their skills, and their comfort levels with the different options.
 

iusedtoberich

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Does anyone think its possible the 8 did not go in the side pocket? I know it looks like it does in the Efren video, but sometimes the camera angle can be very deceiving. If it went easily in the side, I can't understand why Efren chose the shot he did and not the first one Dr Dave showed, going straight down and up table for the side. (And Dr Dave, your 8 looks even more makable in the side than Efren's, but it might just be the camera angle).

It certainly would be cool to pick Efren's brain about specific shots. Actually that could be a nice format to have with many pros. Ask them specific shot questions on a specific game they had. Let us know what was going through their head at that exact moment.
 

dr_dave

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Does anyone think its possible the 8 did not go in the side pocket? I know it looks like it does in the Efren video, but sometimes the camera angle can be very deceiving. If it went easily in the side, I can't understand why Efren chose the shot he did and not the first one Dr Dave showed, going straight down and up table for the side. (And Dr Dave, your 8 looks even more makable in the side than Efren's, but it might just be the camera angle).
I agree that my placement looks a little different, but I think it is clear in the video that Efren's 8 also goes in the side easily.

Like you, I was also very surprised by Efren's choice at first, but he obviously thought the cut was miss-able, which would have most likely lead to a sell out. His choice had many possible good outcomes, even if he missed the 7.


It certainly would be cool to pick Efren's brain about specific shots. Actually that could be a nice format to have with many pros. Ask them specific shot questions on a specific game they had. Let us know what was going through their head at that exact moment.
That's a great idea in theory, but difficult to execute in practice without easy access to and willingness from the players.

Regards,
Dave

PS: Thanks for watching.
 
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