When you want to practice 1 Pocket and there are no opponents available, you can be your own best challenger. Who else can give you the competitive level you deserve?
There is one drill you want to practice over and over before you start playing yourself. The break is one of the biggest possible advantages for a serious player. This is one thing to be practiced over and over until you have at least four or five possible variations.
Setting up for break shots gives you a chance to experiment with different ideas. You might want to try different angles and different speeds. If you can finagle someone into setting up racks for you, you can get a lot of practice in 15-20 minutes. Take your time to consider the many options and try each one several times. Observe the results to determine if that break shot is worthy of use.
To practice the game, play Lefty against Righty. Begin the game with ultra conservative shots. Practice various single and double rail banks. Keep your speed under control. Remember where the cue ball will stop and leave as few opportunities as possible. When balls end up near the opposing pocket, work on clearing them out. Learn to recognize the attempt caroms to maneuver balls near your pocket. And, always, always, carefully think out the shot, angles, speed, and consequences.
Look for opportunities that can push two or more balls near your pocket. Get inventive and downright brilliant in the various solutions you can dream up. And whatever you do, don't lose patience and go for the quick win. Spend more time letting your brain work out the shots and speed.
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