Friday, March 25, 2011

Where Are the Sharking Rules?

Got disappointed the other day when I found out a good player in the area (and a friend of mine) sharked his opponent in the finals of a monthly tourney.

I wasn't there, but I heard the guy (I'll call him Panther) sharked his opponent by stalling a lot.  His opponent (I'll call Smooth) was very frustrated and upset.  Both Panther and Smooth are excellent players - actually, top players in our area - and each make a living out of playing pool.  Therefore, this was their income for the weekend and an important cash flow to both of these players in the finals.

I heard Panther took a lot of breaks, slow-played, stood around a lot, etc.  Smooth even barked at him a few times, but the slow antics caused him to lose his cool and his focus, and then he got double dipped by Panther.

Panther's response to the accusation was, "I gotta do what I gotta do."

I assume that means he needed to do all that because Smooth was tough to beat and Panther could use a little edge that day?  Just a guess.

 Courtesy of Off the Mark.

I mentioned this incident to one of my level-headed friends and he shared, "well, he didn't break any rules."

And you know what?  It's true.  Panther wasn't at some big event or competing on a tour with stringent etiquette rules, he simply played in a small monthly tournament that had your typical 9ball rules, no additional rules.  In comparison, on the WPBA Tour, you are only allowed one break per person per match.  On the OB Cues Ladies Tour, sharking is not allowed and states so in their rules.  There are even ramifications for it.

But in this little monthly tourney, Panther didn't break any rules.  Unless Smooth was to complain to the Tourney Director who then *might* make future rules, Panther was "technically" legal to slow play and stall his way to the win.

Is it ethical and proper?  No, not really.  Did his sharking work?  Sure sounds like it.  Was it unfortunate. Yep, you betcha.  But, he didn't break any rules of that particular tourney....

Yet... still bothers me....


poolminnow said...

What do you think Brad Gilbert would say?

Melinda said...

poolminnow, that is the best ah-ha comment I have ever read! Very impressive and such a wonderful reminder of the book (Winning Ugly) that I wrote about before and completely forgot! You are da bomb. :)