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rest rules

Postby phil67

hi can anyone tell me if this is correct as I cant find the answer in any rules I have searched. when playing I had to use the rest but the shot was just out of reach with the standard rest so I positioned it and took the shot but was told it was a foul because I did not have one hand on the rest. if this is correct and I had known I would have used the extention. I am not disputing it ijust want to know if there is such a rule. I would be very grateful if someone could clear this up for me.

Re: rest rules

Postby Wildey

phil67 wrote:hi can anyone tell me if this is correct as I cant find the answer in any rules I have searched. when playing I had to use the rest but the shot was just out of reach with the standard rest so I positioned it and took the shot but was told it was a foul because I did not have one hand on the rest. if this is correct and I had known I would have used the extention. I am not disputing it ijust want to know if there is such a rule. I would be very grateful if someone could clear this up for me.

That was incorrect surely.

Mark Williams has played shots one handed so not holding the rest is the equivalent of playing a one handed shot.

Re: rest rules

Postby Badsnookerplayer

Welcome Phil.

I don't think it is a foul but there is a doubt in my mind as there must be some restriction as to how much equipment can be on the table.

The official rules are here:
https://www.wpbsa.com/wp-content/upload ... e-game.pdf

A poster called Acesinc is the most knowledgeable person I have come across and I am sure he will reveal the definitive answer soon.

Re: rest rules

Postby Iranu

Players have played shots normally with the rest still on the table, so I can’t see why this would be an issue.

I’d have thought the reason players hold on to the rest is just to make sure it doesn’t slip on the baize.

Re: rest rules

Postby Tim Dunkley

It is not a foul.

Interestingly, if the rest came with the table (ie, it was not your own rest) and the head fell off and touched a ball, it would not be a foul.

Re: rest rules

Postby acesinc

Tim Dunkley wrote:It is not a foul.

Interestingly, if the rest came with the table (ie, it was not your own rest) and the head fell off and touched a ball, it would not be a foul.


Hi Tim! Good to see you again. I have not made it in here very much myself lately. I have long been wondering if you had made it anywhere with that Biskit Boy rule? I read your write up and I hope it may have struck a chord with the right people.

About the topic at hand, thanks for the compliment BadSnookerPlayer. Of course, Tim is absolutely right, no foul. The only point that I may add is that it seems to me that players often seem to believe that there is a Rule somewhere in the Book regarding any possible situation that may occur on a snooker (billiard) table. There is not. Quite the opposite really. The Rules of Snooker are what one would call a minimalist document, written with the full knowledge that it is not possible to cover every situation, therefore, the Rules may on occasion be open to interpretation, and if something occurs that indicates that a SPECIFIC rule must be written (such as the infamous situation of Ronnie nudging a Red to relieve himself of a cantankerous Foul and a Miss sequence), then additions/alterations are made. But the rule of thumb is very simple indeed.....if something is not specifically DISALLOWED in the Rules, then it is allowed.

Do not read the Rule Book expecting to find a passage somewhere that says, "The striker does not need to maintain contact with the rest as he plays his stroke." You won't find that. Just as you will also not find, "The striker must keep one hand on the rest as he plays his stroke." So if nothing in the Rules specifically disallows the action, then the action is allowed. He may play with no hands on the rest, or one or both hands, or even perhaps three hands on the rest if he has a genetic mutation. The Rules do not specify.


As for Tim's new posited scenario of a house rest head falling off and no penalty to striker, of course, that is correct as well. (If you bring your own personal rest/extension to the table, and it is defective causing a foul then penalty points are awarded.) This is what I would call a personal responsibility/"not my fault!" clause. If an outside action occurs for which the striker cannot be held responsible, then no penalty will be awarded; the Referee will return balls to their original positions and the stroke replayed. A couple more examples of this interpretation/line of reasoning (these would probably never happen professionally but easily envisioned at the Snooker Hall): 1) The striker is not responsible if the referee incorrectly spots a ball. (This happened to me at a tournament....I was working the Black end of the table and my idiot opponent spotted Green on the Yellow spot. I didn't notice until I went down there to clear colours. Had to get the Director to make a ruling, no foul.) 2) In a crowded club, you are set to play your stroke. Idiot at the next table bumps you so your cue tip contacts White. No foul. After an ice cold, dagger stare, reset the balls and try to play your stroke again. You won't find these specifics in the Rules but they all follow the same guidelines.

However, you are responsible for your OWN equipment. So if you have your own rest/extension and something breaks and interferes with a ball in play, foul and penalty assessed.

Tim, I have an infraction to run past you that I genuinely don't know the answer, just a best guess. I have not seen it occur so I don't know what the ruling would be. How about a case where a player's tip falls off during a stroke, then the table action causes a ball to roll over the tip diverting the ball? Is a penalty assessed for that? I assume so, and further, I assume it would still be a penalty even if it were a house cue as the player has in a sense taken temporary ownership of that cue by its mere selection. Of course, I have seen plenty of "tip falling off" scenarios but I don't think I have ever seen one that caused a known interference as a result. What say you?

Re: rest rules

Postby Wildey

Ive never read the rules cant be fussed to but over the years they have changed the rules a lot in favour of the player.


it used to be a case if the ref spots the balls wrongly the player would be fouled if he played on with the balls on the wrong spots now its totally the responsibility of the ref as it should be.

Re: rest rules

Postby Tim Dunkley

Hi Acesinc

I've done all I can with the Biskit Boy rule. We are still waiting for the revised rule book to be issued.

Regarding the tip coming off and fouling something, it depends in who is responsible for the cue. You are responsible for your own cue. The referee is responsible for everything that comes with a table.

If you borrow a club cue, you are responsible as it wasn't checked and provided by the referee. So it would be a foul.

Re: rest rules

Postby acesinc

Tim Dunkley wrote:Hi Acesinc

I've done all I can with the Biskit Boy rule. We are still waiting for the revised rule book to be issued.

Regarding the tip coming off and fouling something, it depends in who is responsible for the cue. You are responsible for your own cue. The referee is responsible for everything that comes with a table.

If you borrow a club cue, you are responsible as it wasn't checked and provided by the referee. So it would be a foul.


Thanks Tim. Good to have my aqueous suspicion solidified.

For BadSnookerPlayer from earlier..."...there must be some restriction as to how much equipment can be on the table." Not at all. As you should have already figured from my post earlier, as no specific disallowance is stated in the Rules, you can set a four person dinner setting on the table as long as it does not interfere in any way with the stroke. But you must also understand that NONE of that extra "equipment" may be used to improve conditions for the actual stroke....e.g., you cannot grasp a candlestick holder to improve your bridge hand stability. There is nothing at all saying what may or may not be present on the table at the time of a stroke but there is a passage that clearly states, "All extensions, adaptors and other devices to aid cueing must be of a design approved by the WPBSA Ltd." So that candlestick holder may be present on the table, but it may not be put to use in the course of a stroke (including that it may not be used as a measuring device even if the ball or balls do not actually contact it or interfere in any way).

A couple examples of these sorts of rulings that most people here are probably aware of: 1) Last year year (I think), Kyren Wilson played a stroke by using the spider to steady his bridge hand for high cueing. Many wondered if this was a "legal" action. All equipment was approved by the WPBSA; Kyren just used that equipment in an unorthodox manner (similar to the OP Phil using the rest in an unorthodox manner by not keeping a hand on it). Nothing in the Rules to prohibit it. No foul. and 2) Some kind of controversy that I believe Ronnie placed a cube of chalk on the table surface in a match against Stuart Bingham (I believe....I never actually saw this incident, I may have the specifics, perhaps even the players, incorrect). Many speculated that Ronnie used the cube as a measuring device, perhaps to decide if his cue ball might carom into another ball after contact or whatever. No foul was called. I have no certain opinion as I did not see it either at the time or even video of it later, but by the description of the incident, it does sound to me like a foul occurred though not called.

So rest assured, BadSnookerPlayer, if you wish, you can lay out and fold your laundry on the table during the course of your stroke if you wish. A foul will not/should not be called. That is, unless the Referee believes you are spending an undue amount of time to play your stroke. Unlikely however as you are still very probably playing your stroke at a faster pace than Peter Ebdon's average. <laugh>

Re: rest rules

Postby Badsnookerplayer

Thanks Ace - great post and I am better informed as always.

On the topic of illegal aids to performance I still maintain that Bill Werbeniuk was wronged. He had a medical condition that his drugs controlled. Same as Dennis Taylor wearing glasses or Judd Trump getting laser eye surgery IMO. Still, I am sure I will get over it in the fullness of time.

Re: rest rules

Postby acesinc

Badsnookerplayer wrote:Thanks Ace - great post and I am better informed as always.

On the topic of illegal aids to performance I still maintain that Bill Werbeniuk was wronged. He had a medical condition that his drugs controlled. Same as Dennis Taylor wearing glasses or Judd Trump getting laser eye surgery IMO. Still, I am sure I will get over it in the fullness of time.


Oh, but I disagree Player. Not about Big Bill; you are exactly right about him. I also play a better game with several pints in me (though Big Bill's consumption would surely have me passed out under the table).

No, I mean I disagree that you will get over it in the fullness of time. You should not. You are correct. Continue to fight the good fight!