I have problems with my English Draws.  The thing is that I'm not sure what English I have to use in certain situations.  I was wondering if you could give me a brief understanding 'bout these draws. Are there certain laws in it? Or do I just play the english depending on where i want the ball to be.  Whatever it is I'm very confused and i hope you could help me. Thanks
George has some details for this surfer, thanks George!

Your question is pretty elusive to answer as you've put it, because you haven't told us enough about the shots confronting you. But let's examine a few generalities.

First, are you sure you NEED to be shooting all those English-with-draw shots? The proper uses of English are 1) to alter a cue ball's path after object-ball contact, 2) to alter the angle the cue ball takes off a rail, 2) in the finesse games like 14.1 and one-pocket, to help you "throw" an object ball when the contact point you want isn't fully available. Otherwise, you can accomplish a very high percentage of your shots by staying in the cue ball's vertical center.

Since that's not what you specifically asked, though, the first thing you want to keep in mind is the 90-degree rule, or what some call the rule of tangents: if the cue ball is skidding, not rolling, when it strikes the object ball, it will deflect 90 degrees from the object ball's path (or stop dead in its tracks if the shot was straight in). If it's rolling naturally, it will deflect less than 90 degrees (how much less depends on speed), and if you draw it, it will deflect more than 90 degrees. Now, English is not SUPPOSED to affect those angles of deflection - but in my experience, inside English (that is, English on the same side as the direction of your cut shot) combined with draw gets you the widest deflection angles of all, especially on quality Simonis cloth.

The catch to all this is, English used in combination with draw is the most complex cue-ball strike there is in pool, and I have a hunch you're making things more difficult on yourself than you need to. Some players, especially Mike Sigel, suggest maybe half a cue-tip's worth of running English on all cut shots, to neutralize the "cling" factor. But in formulating your position patterns, you should be looking first for solutions which don't require all that much English.

If that's your preferred approach to position play, though, remember not to go all the way to the outside 1/4 of the cue ball for either follow or side-spin shots. Halfway from the center to the ball's edge is plenty; farther than that adds very little incremental spin, and increases your risk of miscues considerably. However, on your draw shots, you must get down as low on the cue ball as feasible, keeping your cue level, of course.

Hope this helps. I didn't mean to be this wordy, but your question requires some complex answers. The topic is worth a whole chapter in my upcoming book, so it's tricky to synopsize in a single post. Thanks very much for writing, and good luck with your game. GF
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