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Black Belt Billiards: Cue Ball Control. ~ Hurricane Wayne Jenkins

In the last edition of Black Belt Billiards, we started working to increase our ball pocketing skills with a game called Straight Pool.

How did you score? Post your score on our Facebook Group here. You should continually see your scores increase week after week as you make this game part of your daily practice session.

This time we are going to start working on our cue ball control. We will take the focus off of ball pocketing by placing the object ball near the pocket and focus on cue ball angles off of the rail and cue ball speed to a targeted location. For this game you will need:

  1. The cue ball

  2. The 1, 2, 3, and 4 balls

  3. Three sheets of 8.5 x 11 notebook or printer paper.

  4. Scotch tape ( will keep target from moving )

black belt billiards pool table

  1.  1-1

  2.  2-2

  3.  2-1, 1-2, 2-3, 3-2

  4.  1-2, 2-3, 3-2, 2-1

  5.  1-3, 3-1, 1-3, 3-1

Setting the Table

Set up the table as shown above with the 1-4 balls in each corner. Do not place them far into the corner, but out far enough so the cue ball will not hit the points of the pocket when pocketing the object ball. Mark your three sheets of paper one to three and place them on the marked locations on the table. Scotch tape on the corners will keep it from sliding when you shoot. Below the table you will see fuve sets of numbers. They are the starting and finishing locations on the table you will shoot from and back to.

You will always shoot the balls in order 1 through 4.

The first set is as shown: 1. 1-1.

The first number 1 is the starting location of the cue ball. Then a dash and the second number 1. This is the finishing location (target) where the cue ball is to stop upon.

Shoot the balls in order 1-4.

The second is as shown: 2. 2-2.

This set uses the number 2 target as the start and finishing location.

The third set is as shown: 3. 2-1, 1-2, 2-3, 3-2.

This set shows the four shots using a different starting and finishing location. The first numbers, 2-1 is for pocketing the 1 ball and uses the number 2 target as the starting location and the number 1 target and the finishing location. The second numbers, 1-2 are for the two balls starting and finishing location. The third numbers, 2-3 are for the three balls starting and finishing location. The fourth numbers, 3-2 are for the four balls starting and finishing location.

Sets four and five are played the same as set three. Remember to always shoot the balls in order one to four. You will always finish on the target you started on at the end of the set.

For all five sets with four shots on the table you will have made a total of 20 shots.

Scoring as follows with a pocketed object ball: five points for stopping the cue ball on correct target. Three points for cue ball edge over the edge of the target but not on target. One point for the cue ball rolling onto and off of target, but not stopping on or over edge of target. 20 shots x five points maximum per shot = 100 points per table. If you miss a target, leave the cue ball where it stops. Do not move it to the next target. This will give you a different angle and English control shot each time you practice these target tables.

Here are the target table scores needed to achieve each level.

Keep an average each time you play this challenge.

Post your scores and chat with us here. In the next issue we will continue to work on our cue ball control and a ball pocketing skills game that utilizes one half of the table. Check out my channel Hurricane Wayne Jenkins for the video lesson on this article click here.

Wayne Jenkins is a Pro/Am tournament player, a published author of two books on pool, and an inventor of pool accessories and custom cue cases. Since hitting the road in 2006 he has won 142 tournaments to date. In 2007, he released his first book Black Belt Billiards, and in 2008 his second, Black Belt 8 Ball. Both are a collection of games he used as a practice routine to perfect the different skills in pool. Both books are available at and retail book stores worldwide. Black Belt Billiards is also available on google playstore as an app for your phone. He is the inventor of Double Diamonds, Hurricane’s Big Diamond Rack, and Sarcophagus Custom Cue Cases. For availability on these products you can contact him personally at

Photo: Quedalpalabra/Flickr Editor: Edith Lazenby
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