(FAQ) How does someone concede a game?

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There are times when your opponent is shooting the game winning ball and the shot is well within his skills. The shot is so simple, that he couldn't miss if you blindfolded him. In such situations, you want to concede the game and get on with the next.

A game concession can be indicated in several ways, each which acknowledges that the person recognizes that the game is lost and there is no need to waste time officially finishing the game. How does someone concede? Usually, this is done before the soon to be winning player can start shooting the final ball or balls. This is how you would signal your concession:

  • Reach across the table with your stick and touch or move the money ball.
  • Use your stick to push or sweep the cue ball away from its position on the table.
  • Get up and start pulling object balls out of the pockets and onto the table.
  • Go over to the table and lay your cue on the table.
  • Pull the rack out and set it on the table.
  • If gambling, move the game money onto the table.
  • Speak up and concede the game.
  • Begin breaking your stick down. (This signifies the concession for the match, not a single game.)

It is a gesture of respect from the losing player that he knows the shooter is fully capable of completing the game to the win. The reason may be as simple as straightforward acceptance of table reality or to save table time expenses and get onto the next game. If someone concedes the game to you, a "Thank you." is good idea. Courtesy is never out of place.

In some venues, such as a pool hall where you have never played, any apparent concession that does not place balls or equipment on the table, it doesn't hurt to ask if it is a concession. Some (not many) players think it's funny to start acting as if it is a concession, but do not disturb the balls on the table. Then, when you move a ball, they claim you fouled and given them ball in hand.

Many leagues have a rule that if someone concedes the game but the other player still continues to shoot, that the concession is void. It is a slight discourtesy to do so where no rule is specified. It is also discourteous to use a stick to concede the game while the shooter is already bent down on the shot. Some consider this a minor shark attempt.

Whether you concede a game or not depends on your opponent's abilities and the table layout. If he has conceded a previous game, you are free to return the same consideration. But, you are under no obligation to do so. If, in your belief, there is the potential of a miss, you want the game to proceed just on the off-chance.

Game concessions are common when playing and practicing with friends. It saves time and keeps the interaction moving along. When playing matches or when there is some money on the game, it is an excellent rule of thumb to never offer a concession, even if your opponent does for you.

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