Building A Break

A question from the Youth Information Centre, Limerick – “What is the best advice for break building?”

Break building is a very difficult thing indeed. Many find it hard to understand why they can pot the near impossible long red, then possibly quite a tricky colour but cannot keep this up, possibly losing position or frustratingly missing a sitter.

One of the best pieces of advice here really is not to think too much about the size of the break that you are on. Get the other player to keep putting your points up and keep track of your break while you think about position and potting the balls. If you’re really lucky they may even put your colours up for you. Stay calm, relaxed and treat every shot as if it is a practice and don’t think about points. Think carefully about position but don’t neglect the pot and keep a positive mind, knowing that you can deal with anything a wayward shot can throw at you.

As you approach the table for every shot, have a good look at what’s available, and decides what is best. Make sure that you’re going for the right shot and don’t get down for the shot until your sure. If you are unsure then half of your mind will be on the shot you could have taken, and you’re twice as likely to miss. Set a good, solid stance and take a few seconds to aim the shot – but don’t hurry. If you’re unsure then get up and have a look rather than saying what you should have done once you’ve missed.

Once you get into the swing of the break and you are not thinking about how high it is, try to take roughly the same amount of time over each shot, which will get you into a rythm. Remember though, it cannot be stressed how important it is to think carefully about position, as once you run out a little it tends to get a lot worse very quickly. Happy break building.