Tips for aspiring pub pool sharks
When you think of pool, a middle-aged man in a pub might spring to mind, pint in one hand, cue in the other.
Alexandria Endres, 13, and Alyxandra Jones,14, are the antithesis of this.
But the teenage girls – worldclass pool players – would probably beat every man in that pub.
Ironically, glugging too much beer won’t help sharpen your pool skills.
It’s the pair’s first top tip for becoming a pool master – focus is crucial. It’s a game of problem solving and intense concentration.
So, a liquored-up brain won’t help.
Men are usually surprised when the two girls, from Hamilton’s Masse Pool Club, beat them.
Although they shouldn’t – it’s a sport in which age, gender and fitness mean nothing.
The girls first began playing a few years ago, at pool camp.
Now Endres and Jones are two of New Zealand’s 15 top junior pool players heading to the US to compete in the VNEA Junior Pool Championships this month.
Players from all around New Zealand gathered for their final camp on Sunday at Hamilton Masse Pool Club, where Endres and Jones shared some of their top tips.
It’s a mind game, so you need a straight face, the duo say.
A serial-killer stare could wobble your opponent’s confidence.
And take your time – if your opponent is in a rush, wander around the table and take even longer to put them off.
Next, you need to get your positioning right.
Line up your cue and imagine a ‘‘ghost ball’’ right where you need the ball to travel.
Lastly, think good thoughts, Endres says.
At the tournament, Endres will think of Disneyland – which she’ll visit in the US – to keep her mood right.
Other times she imagines winning.
Alexandria Endres, left, and Alyxandra Jones are two of New Zealand’s 15 top junior pool players.