Sharking is designed to bend or break an opponent's concentration and ability to focus on the game. These and thousands of other tricks have been around a long time. It is so pervasive in the world that Sun Tzu incorporated it in his "The Art of War", and that was written 2,500 years ago.
If you do a close study of newspaper accounts of the great billiards and pool championship that were played in the 1800’s, there were plenty of accusations and counter-accusations of distractive tricks.
Sharking can be as obvious as the famous pocket coin-jingling trick while standing on up close to your opponent’s blind side. It can be so subtle that you may not even realize the shark occurred until after the money has been paid out. What you thought were merely little habits of your opponent could very easily be intentional destroyers of your playing concentration.
On the other hand, you can spend too much time considering what actions and words by your opponent are intended distractions. You could get to the point where someone saying "hello" is a shark (who knows, it might be). Paranoia may be one of the great unknown health risks of playing cue sports.
Most of the time, you get common wanna-be hustlers who apply the most crass, low-class, and obviously stupid tricks. It is possible that someone used some trick on them and they fell for it. Therefore, in their opinion, that particular shark should work on every other pool player in the world. Fortunately, with the knowledge gained from this book, these players are easily re-sharked, and are quickly turned into excellent victims.
Be aware that some players see sharking as an art form and a necessary competitive skill. These experienced hustlers apply each maneuver as part of a strategic program designed to help them win games and matches. All they want is to take the money.
Experienced pool hustlers have a very large library of tricks, ready to be adapted to any competitor's personality and playing style. Rather than a sledge hammer approach, they prefer the gentle tap of a carefully placed psychological chisel.
Here is a critical rule of thumb when playing with a pool hustler (or suspected pool hustler): DO NOT “EVER” get upset or angry when being sharked (obvious or subtle).
Once you recognize what is happening, the correct reaction is to take intelligent action against the pool fool who thinks he can use tricky gamesmanship. The material in this book provides all the necessary tools to not only turn the tables, but also to significantly improve your winning opportunities.
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