A client of mine sent me his weekly diary today and an enormously important topic stood out… which it happens to be one of the biggest differentiators between players who can never make 40 and players who regularly make 50 breaks.
First, he talked about “Was seriously starting to wonder whether all this practice has had any effect and whether I should just give up.”
Second, he talked about starting poorly in his game… and how he finished!
“My opponent was dreadful from the off, and I was worse. He tried for a couple of frames but I could see how hard it was for him and I just worked on myself, keeping quiet.
I was determined to practise what I preach and analyse what I was doing (wrong). Detected that I wasn't committing to the shot and started to fix that. In the third frame at 2-0 up, I made a 64 break. Wow!!
I was playing really quite badly but I managed to commit to all shots and through sheer determination kept potting balls.
I didn't feel I was playing well, but it's one of the best things I've done. Wasn't elated, but was relieved.
Then in the next frame I made a 65! Similar scenario with lots of grit and determination to make up for poor positional play.
Obviously the bucket bags help a lot but I have never had back to back 60s and I'm not sure I've had a 60 at all for 25 years!!!!”
Thirdly, he summarised:
“Committing to the line of aim was HUGE tonight (a couple of committed misses were very gratifying), as was just not giving up.”
What really fascinated me about this was his phrase at the end: ‘A couple of committed misses were very gratifying.’
So if you are struggling to aim and pot balls consistently, I wonder what would happen if you:
Commit 100% to your best guess of the line of aim on every shot (even if uncertain it was the correct line)
Commit 100% to cueing as straight as possible on the that line (even if still uncertain it was the correct line)
If the next 100 shots you missed all had these two commitments it would be very interesting to hear what happens in your game!
Why not give it a try and let us know…