Bank Pool Rules
The game is played with a cue ball (the white ball) and five (optionally also 9 or 15) object balls.
The object is to score points by pocketing balls using a bank shot. A frame is won by the player who pockets three (5 when there are 9 balls, 8 when there are 15 balls) balls, making it impossible for the opponent to reach more.
- The game begins with the cue ball in hand behind the head string.
- You must cause at least four object balls to contact the cushions or it is an illegal break. If any balls are pocketed on the opening break, you continue shooting. Any balls pocketed on the opening break are not scored and are spotted after your inning ends.
- When an illegal break occurs, the opposing player has the option to accept the table and take their turn or to have the balls re-racked and break.
All object balls are legal. Legally pocketing a ball entitles you to continue your inning. Your inning ends if you do not legally pocket a ball.
A legally pocketed ball counts as one ball. Any ball pocketed in addition to the called ball on the same shot does not count and is an illegally pocketed ball.
A ball is legally pocketed if:
- it is pocketed as the result of a bank shot.
- the number of cushions are designated when calling the shot and only that number of cushions are contacted.
- it is not pocketed as a result of a kiss or carom.
- it is not contacted by the cue ball more than once.
A ball is illegally pocketed if the shot does not meet the above requirements, if it is pocketed in addition to the called ball, or if a foul is committed on the shot. All illegally pocketed balls are spotted, but spotting is delayed until the shooter’s inning ends.
It is a foul
- if you hit a non-designated ball first with the cue ball.
- if no ball is pocketed, and none of the balls is driven to a rail.
- if the cue ball is pocketed. Your opponent receives ball in hand behind the head string.
- if the cue ball does not cross the head string before contacting the object ball when ball in hand behind the head string.
- if you do not complete your shot within 60 seconds.
After a foul, opponent gets ball in hand (not necessarily behind the head string).
The frame is lost by the player who commits three consecutive fouls.
The player to shoot can claim draw if there is no ball potted for 2x10 (2x15 for 15 ball game) consecutive turns.
The player to shoot can claim victory if the there is no ball potted for 2x10 (2x15 for 15 ball game) consecutive turns, and his/her lead is bigger than half the number of balls needed for a win. That is, the lead is at least 2 points in 5-ball, at least 3 points in 9-ball, and at least 5 points in 15-ball game.
End of the game
The game ends when one player has legally pocketed three (five or eight) balls and does not owe any balls, which also means winning the frame.
For each foul you commit you must spot one of your previously scored balls, reducing your score by one. There is no ball-in-hand after a foul.
If you foul and have no previously scored object balls, you "owe" one for that foul and must spot balls after each scoring inning until all "owed balls" are eliminated.
When you have cue ball in hand behind the head string and all remaining balls are also behind the head string, the object ball nearest the head string may be spotted upon your request.
Double hit is also a foul.
A player who reaches -3 points loses the frame. The frame is also over when the difference in points reaches the number of balls necessary to win.