In UK Pool rules, what happens if both players are on black and a player deliberately taps the white 1cm forward into nothing?

As I play, this is a foul but as the next player is on black they do not get 2 shots, however this tactic was employed to have the black ball moved by the player not committing the foul to move the black from a tricky position.

  • In the rules that I play, a foul on the black means game over. Your slight push forward would forfeit the game.
    – Chenmunka
    Commented Feb 26, 2016 at 15:39

2 Answers 2


TL;DR: you're not playing under any even reasonably recent version of the English Pool Association rules, so we can't answer the question.

Under current English Pool Association rules (which are the same as the World Eight Ball Pool Association Rules), a foul when the black is "on" still results in the opponent receiving two visits to the table. A foul results in a loss of frame only if the black ball is potted.

Under the old EPA rules (pre-2009),

A player who clearly fails to make any attempt to play a ball of their own group will lose the game.

but this rule does not exist in the current rules. (Note that "game" in this context means "frame" rather than "match").

Neither of these rule sets (nor the 2009-2014 rules) include the stipulation that a player on the black does not receive two visits, so you're going to have to ask your tournament organiser.

  • 1
    To add to this, under the other major ruleset played in the UK at County level, Blackball, no attempt to play a legal shot is deemed a loss of frame. However this sometimes debated as when in a Total Snooker situation it is often up to the referees decision whether sufficient effort has been made to play a legal escape, especially when an unsuccessful attempt to play a legal shot (standard foul) has changed the layout in a way beneficial to that player.
    – sequoiad
    Commented Jun 13, 2016 at 15:53
  • This depends on the rule set being played. I have played World rules where if you declare to the referee that you are playing into open space, you are not committing a foul unless you hit any ball. Commented Jul 9, 2019 at 13:10

In addition, since you described that the move to play the cueball forward without making contact with the eight ball was DELIBERATE.. it would be construed as a loss of frame foul under the 2015 EPA rules as follows from what I can tell:

Loss of frame fouls

(5) Deliberately causing any ball or balls to be moved in a manner other than that which may result from playing a normal shot

Ergo you would lose the frame by making this type of shot deliberately.

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