Misjudgement is not a good reason to refuse calling a ‘miss’. The term ‘good enough attempt’ does not include the striker playing the stroke shown in the diagram as a black dotted line or any kind of similar stroke. It is obvious that the player has an easy escape here with plenty of reds to hit (one of a few options being the one cushion escape indicated by the red dotted line) even though the cue ball is fully snookered on all the reds.
Some may argue that in playing the black dotted line stroke, the miss was really only by a couple of millimetres and shouldn’t result in a ‘miss’ call because it was only the knuckle of the middle pocket that forced the cue ball to skew off to one side and miss so badly.
This is not the case.
The striker has a duty, in playing out of any snookered situation, to first strike a ball on or to get close enough to one to convince the referee that an attempt commensurate with the skills possessed had been made to do so. Being hampered by the nearness of the middle pocket in the choice of escape does not condone the failure.
It is well within the rights of a referee to call a miss, even on a lesser skilled player, for this, or a similar type of mistake.
Taking the opportunity whilst having this diagram available it would be advantageous to make known the names of the cushions and pockets for any future blogs posted without diagrams which will ease and/or eliminate lengthy explanations.
Everyone knows which is the Baulk cushion so that is a good place to start. This is usually designated as cushion number 1 then going round the table in a clockwise direction, standing at the baulk cushion and facing the table, they would be numbered in sequence as 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.
This means that cushion number 2 is the left baulk cushion (B L.), number 3 is the left top cushion (T L.), number 4 is the top cushion, 5 is the right top cushion (T R.) and number 6 is the right baulk cushion (B R.).
Similarly, the pockets have the designation of left and right baulk, left and right centre and left and right top pockets. The left and right sides of the table are the ones on the long side viewed from the baulk end looking towards the top.
There could be some confusion by T.V. watchers about which is the top cushion because T.V. snooker broadcasts invariably show the top of the table as the one nearest the camera, which then has the top cushion at the bottom of the screen and the definition of which is the top of the table and which is the bottom then has to be flipped in your mind. Billiards players always know which is which because of the strived for art of ‘playing top of the table’. This consists of a sequence of canons and pot reds from on and around the spot which can result in breaks in the high three figures and even into four figures by the top players.
If you ever have occasion to strip a table for any sort of maintenance it will often be found that previous table fitters have designated the cushions with Roman Numerals (I, II, III, IV, V and VI). I often found this very confusing after re-clothing a table and about to re-assemble it, especially if those cushions were lying somewhere upside down with the ones numbered IV and VI very easy to mix up and because of this I much prefer the numbered or letters code as explained above. Actually, those two cushions are easily identified because cushion No. 4 (the top cushion) has a long curve at each end for the top corner pockets whilst cushion No 6 is the Baulk Right cushion that has a sharp curve at one end for the right middle pocket, but it’s still easy to make the mistake without clear markings.