I’ll spare you all the gory details of the terrible tournament I played in Saturday, and just pony up that I went 2 and out. Yes. It’s extremely disappointing. It’s even moreso because Friday I spent about 7 hours at the table and feel like I finally worked out whatever kink was happening with me (see previous post). A teammate from my Masters team came up and we played two races to 10. Each of them went hill-hill and I was fortunate enough to snap my only 9 on the hill-hill break. But, the moral of that story is that I just needed some good stiff, but friendly, competition, I think. Something without meaning, but still serious. I broke and ran once and more often than not, with a good spread, if he missed at all, no matter which ball, I was out. Of course, so was he. It was almost like playing the ghost. It was a great time – and I’m guessing, *exactly* what I needed.

Saturday morning, I get there a little early and warm up, still playing about as well as the previous night. I’m feeling particularly good about the day, and I’m hoping to make it into the final 4. I thought I was a favorite – a lot of people thought I was a favorite. I’m glad there wasn’t a calcultta. Like I said, I went 2 and out.

But, the point of this post is this shot I pulled off. I actually don’t remember if I overran position from the 2 to the 3 or if my opponent missed the 3 and left me here. Regardless, I studied it for a good long time. Probably a minute or so. Then, I saw it. “Rail first with inside spin will reverse off the 2nd rail and bring me back up to the good side of the ball. I visualized the shot, comitted to it, got down and let the cue fly. To my entertainment (and judging by the peanut gallery’s response, their amazement) the cueball traveled perfectly across the table then spun right on up to the long rail giving me an angle on the 4.

I was hoping that would be the shot that turned the match around for me, but as good as I was playing, I just couldn’t outrun giving up 9 balls to these players when the good rolls and bumps were more on their side than mine. Sure, I got some, but they got more. I played decently, but I just couldn’t get started. The break was the biggest factor for me. I wasn’t getting good spreads, I tried several positions and speed combos and if I did make a ball, I was hooked on the 1 or could only try a safe. When I missed a shot, I left them so much more perfect than it laid when I came to the table. shrug Just one of those days.

I spend the rest of the day as a railbird watching people win, lose, blow a gasket and cheer for/against random people. It was a good day overall and by the end of the night, I didn’t really care that I had lost so badly earlier that morning.