8 ball - The Rules of Play

Eight Ball
Eight ball is played with fifteen numbered object balls and the cue ball. The shooter’s group
of seven balls (one through seven or nine through fifteen) must all be off the table before he
attempts to pocket the eight ball to win. Shots are called.

Any equipment may be used such as jump cues, any weight cue stick. Laser equipment shall not be used nor any
object for marking rails! Scoring shall be done by a competent person on team that understands game to insure correct

Determining First Break
The player winning the lag has the option to determine who has to execute the first break shot.
Winner Breaks and Racks his or her own balls.

Eight Ball Rack
The fifteen object balls are racked as tightly as possible in a triangle, with the apex ball on the
foot spot and the eight ball as the first ball that is directly below the apex ball. One from each
group of seven will be on the two lower corners of the triangle. The other balls are placed in
the triangle without purposeful or intentional pattern.

Break Shot
The following rules apply to the break shot:
(a) The cue ball begins in hand behind the head string.
(b) No ball is called, and the cue ball is not required to hit any particular object ball first.
(c) If the breaker pockets a ball and does not foul, he continues at the table, and the table
remains open.
(d) If no object ball is pocketed, at least four object balls must be driven to one or more rails,
or the shot results in an illegal break, and the incoming player has the option of
(1) accepting the table in position, or
(2) re-racking and breaking, or
(3) re-racking and allowing the offending player to break again.

(e) Pocketing the eight ball on a legal break shot is not a foul. If the eight ball is pocketed, the
breaker has the option of
(1) re-spotting the eight ball and accepting the balls in position, or
(2) re-breaking.
(f) If the breaker pockets the eight ball and scratches, the opponent
has the option of
(1) re-spotting the eight ball and shooting with cue ball in hand
(2) re-breaking.
(g) If any object ball is driven off the table on a break shot, it is a foul; such balls remain out
of play (except the eight ball which is re-spotted); and the incoming player has the option of
(1) accepting the table in position, or
(2) taking cue ball in hand.
(h) If the breaker fouls in any manner not listed above, the following player has the option of
(1) accepting the balls in position, or
(2) taking cue ball in hand.

Open Table / Choosing Groups
Before groups are determined, the table is said to be “open,” and before each shot, the shooter
must call his intended ball. If the shooter legally pockets his called ball, the corresponding
group becomes his, and his opponent is assigned the other group. If he fails to legally pocket
his called ball, the table remains open and play passes to the other player. When the table is
“open”, any object ball may be struck first except the eight ball.

Continuing Play
The shooter remains at the table as long as he continues to legally pocket called balls, or he
wins the rack by pocketing the eight ball.