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How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle

How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle

This is a billiard drill to help you strike the cue ball at dead center more accurately. It is harder than it looks, especially when you play the shot at a faster pace. The skill is commonly called center striking, center ball cueing, center-ball hit, or a straight stroke and is a critical pool playing skill that is often overlooked.

Place two "walls" of four object balls each about a ball and a half's width away from each other on the bottom rail as shown in the billiard drill diagram below. Set up the cue ball or a striped ball in the dead center of the head string (e.g. the 10 ball at the "start" position in the diagram). I use a striped ball instead of the cue ball so that I can more easily see, and troubleshoot, if I have mistakenly applied any unwanted spin. The goal is to send the ball straight down to the rail between the two "walls" of balls, and have it come straight back and through the head spot and hit the cushion at the center diamond.

Using a relaxed and steady grip on the pool cue, and a correct and solid stance, strike the ball dead center to rebound it off the rail between the balls and back towards the top rail. If the cue ball is not coming back straight you are putting on unwanted side spin which means you are not hitting it dead center. If you hit the ball in the center with a firm stroke, it should hit the end rail and come back across the spot without touching any of the object balls on the way in or out.

Billiard drill to hit the cue ball perfectly straight on center

Try to consistently perform this drill by doing it twice in a row, five times in a row, ten times in a row, etc. Each time you fail, you start the count over.

Advanced Center Ball Hit Drill

To increase the complexity of this drill, you can put another object ball behind the cue ball (or ten ball in this case) and try to have the cue ball come back (as in the first version) and strike the 8 ball to drive it into the rail at the center diamond (position D) as follows:

Advanced billiard drill for center striking the cue ball

This one is extremely difficult to execute properly. Do a couple in a row and you are approaching a god-like billiard skill level.

How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle

  • Title: How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle
  • Author: (Billiards Forum)
  • Published: 5/25/2008 2:47:00 AM
  • Last Updated: 9/22/2016 9:15:18 AM
  • Last Updated By: billiardsforum
  • Source: Archives

How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle

The How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle article belongs to the Billiard Shot Making and Shooting Tutorials category. Pool tutorials around billiard shot making and shooting tips.

How To Hit the Cue Ball in the Middle Comments

  1. daniel sheetsdaniel sheets from CA, United States on 7/15/2014 9:32:41 AM

    Thank you for this billiard drill on striking the center of the cue ball.

    The longer I shoot pool, the more I realize how much help I need. Refining every aspect of shot making and having patience is a big job.

    Thanks again, it is appreciated.

  2. Bob MeachamBob Meacham from San Antonio, TX on 3/19/2017 12:59:24 AM

    I use the same drill, but with modifications.

    For 15 minutes I try to make the cue ball come straight back to rest against the rail. Besides training you to hit long straight shots, it really helps with your lag.

    Then I do the same for another 15 minutes but this time I bang it as hard as I can and try to get 5 rebounds off the rails still hitting dead center on the cue ball. I figure it will help my break shot if I can stroke hard and control where my cue is hitting the cue ball.

    Then I'll be that much better and it'll be that much easier when I start using English.

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