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Darren Appleton

Instruction Articles:
9-ball Crossover
January 2020

Channel your Mosconi Cup 9-ball fever with a fun drill.

No doubt the post-Mosconi Cup hangover has everyone itching to play 9-ball! As a treat, here is a great 9-ball drill that is a must for players of all levels.

This drill will teach you how to use one rail and the whole table. By only being able to use corner pockets, this drill will help you develop great cue ball speed control. As always, staying on the right side of the object ball is crucial.

The 9-Ball Crossover Drill is fun, but it can also be frustrating if you donít maintain your focus.

The rules are simple: Odd-numbered balls must be pocketed in the top right (1, 3) and bottom left (5, 7, 9) pockets. Even-numbered balls must be pocketed in the top left (2, 4) and bottom right (6, 8) pockets. The balls must be pocketed in rotation and you can only use one rail. Of course, you canít make contact with another ball.

Starting with ball in hand, the 1 ball and 2 ball are simple follow shots. Itís all about cue ball speed. The 3 is a soft, center ball punch shot, and the 4 is a simple follow shot.

Depending on the angle, you can play the 5 ball with an easy punch shot, running just above center cue ball. If you hit this too hard or too low, you risk scratching in the side pocket.

Slow roll the 6 with follow. When I tried this, I didnít leave enough angle on the 7, so I used a punch shot with a touch of follow.

The 8 ball is a simple follow shot and the 9 takes a trace of right English.

The nice thing with this drill is that you will really need to feel the cue ball. Using soft punch shots with easy follow through and almost no English will force you to find the center of the cue ball. Each shot looks easy, but if your speed is off, you wonít land in the proper position. Then, each shot becomes a lot more difficult. Finding a way to get back in line is a challenge, but thatís what the pros do. Contrary to what we tell you, weíre not always in line with every shot!