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Scotch Doubles - Billiard Term Definition

Welcome to the billiard, pool, and snooker glossary of terms. This is the definition of Scotch Doubles as it relates to cue sports. You can also view the entire billiard dictionary

Definition of Scotch Doubles

Scotch Doubles is a billiards slang term that is a part of Game Rule Terminology.

Scotch doubles is a type of doubles billiard play. In this version, each team member alternates shots during an inning. For example, if you are on a team with Jimmy, and you shoot and pocket a ball, your team's inning continues, but Jimmy takes the next shot. You and Jimmy continue to rotate shots until one player misses. At this point, your team's inning ends, and the other team's inning begins. Effective and carefully honed communication skills will greatly benefit players in a scotch rotation of play. Intimate communication between each team member is paramount. As you can imagine, the team mate is justly concerned about the cue ball positioning that will result from your shot. As noted in the wikipedia entry for this term, the word "scotch" is generally not to be capitalized when used in this context.

See: doubles for more on the meaning of "Scotch Doubles".

Scotch Doubles - Usage

Want to play a doubles game with Jenna and Kate? No, but lets play Scotch doubles instead.

Scotch Doubles - Origin and History

The term "scotch doubles" is also used in bowling, and may have originated here before being used in a billiard context.

Billiards - Scotch Doubles

Forum questions and answers mentioning the billiard definition of "Scotch Doubles":

  • Title: Scotch Doubles
  • Author: (Billiards Forum)
  • Published: 10/24/2007 8:37:47 PM
  • Last Updated: 10/24/2007 8:47:19 PM
  • Last Updated By: billiardsforum
  • Source: Wikipedia

Scotch Doubles Comments

  1. Wayne FaulknerWayne Faulkner from Sun City, AZ on 12/16/2015 3:33:06 PM

    Is coaching allowed in scotch doubles?

    For example can you tell the other teammate the layout of the table run before his next shot, etc.?

  2. billiardsforumbilliardsforum from Halifax, NS on 1/24/2017 11:16:21 AM

    Depends on the league you are playing in and on the level of the event. You see a LOT of local scotch doubles tournament rules saying something like this:

    Players may talk to one another. However, once an opponent has completed his turn, the opposing players may not talk among themselves until after they have completed their turn.

    But more and more, the offical scotch doubles rules are allowing coaching between team mates.

    VNEA Scotch Doubles 8 Ball Rules - Section H, Fouling, Part 7:

    1. 15 seconds maximum coaching between shots. Any longer is a foul. (For International Championship competition, coaching will not be allowed)

    The BCAPL has recently changed the rules for coaching in scotch doubles (early 2016). From the 2016 BCAPL National Championships Tournament Regulations:

    C5 - Coaching

    1. Scotch Doubles

      • a. Open communication/coaching IS permitted between teammates during their turn at the table. However, the non-shooting player must remain in or at his/her chair and may not approach the table.

      • b. Communication/coaching cannot result in slower than normal play. As a general guide, there should be no more than 45 seconds between each shot. If a team consistently uses more than 45 seconds between shots, the opposing team may summon a referee to monitor the match and the referee may institute delayed progress rulings at any time per section A8.

    There was a lot of negative feedback about this change in the rules, but when you consider that scotch doubles is a team event, why would you add rules to discourage team work team dynamic? CSI has revealed that this is the main reason behind the change in rules for coaching in scotch doubles.

    This change was made after much deliberation. In the end, the consensus was that scotch doubles is the ultimate display of teamwork in pool and not allowing two partners to communicate makes it less of a team event. We believed that it was time to make this change to improve the team atmosphere and overall enjoyment of the players.

  3. Cara DCara D from Saint Paul, MN on 8/11/2018 5:51:55 PM

    My Grandparents came up the rules of play for scotch doubles pool. My Grandfather, Randy Goettlicher, was one of the four original PBIA Master Instructors and he and my grandmother traveled all over playing this game.

    He still plays and has his own pool school. Love ya Pop's.

  4. bothofmanybothofmany from Monroe, WA on 12/8/2019 3:14:59 PM

    @Cara D - Was "scotch doubles" invented to try to attract more women into cue sports?

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