Smaller than Life
Why a blog? Simple. Cacoethes Scribendi -- the urge to write! My literary pretensions and caprices bring me here. Like any writer I write to be read. All my posts, though fettered to my small world and trivially myopic, will live and yearn that somebody connects to them someday. Cognitive frenzies, sardonic musings, aimless banters, incoherent ramblings and trivial indulgences; this is simply an episodic narrative of my trivial world -- in a grain of sand… Smaller than Life.
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Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Watching pool in Vegas
Watching the Mosconi Cup 2009 in Vegas has been one of my most fulfilling experiences to date for a number of reasons. The primary reason is that there are few sports where you can watch the pros from such close quarters. The only other sport where I have invested such enthusiasm and energy is cricket and it's very tough to get to look at somebody like, say, Sachin Tendulkar up close. I watched the best battle it out for 4 days. Each person had a unique style: each held the cue differently, stroked differently and had different styles. That made me ask the question: if they can all be so good despite employing different (some unconventional) techniques, what are they all commonly doing right?
As I watched, I gathered some interesting metadata about them as opposed to wannabe geniuses at the pool halls.
Each person had a very deliberate routine. No matter what the pressure was, he followed it unforgivingly. He analysed the shot, saw the angles, got into his stance, stroked the same number of practice shots and stroked in the same manner every single time. Watching them do their work in 'pin drop' silence was like watching a suspense film in slow motion.
The one other fascinating point was they never tried to play a flashy stroke or try to play to the gallery. In every scenario, they played the simplest shot possible. They 'took what the table gave them' (to quote a pool phrase) and did not try to force the situation. They repeatedly played the easiest shot possible and it was almost boringly repetitive. It's almost like repeatedly playing expert defensive shots for singles as opposed to trying to clear the field for six. They just played the table and never the opponent or the situation. Great methods.
The most interesting aspect was when they made the odd mistake, they never lost their cool. The next time they got a chance, they just went through their routine like nothing had happened the shot before. Amazing resilience borne out of hours and hours spent trusting and perfecting their methods and playing under pressure all the time.
Watching them, you felt no envy that you couldn't play like that, because the tremendous amount of work that they had put into perfecting their methods stared at you right in the face. Just watching them play, I think I became a better pool player! Not really, but almost. :)
These were great lessons for me and I learnt more about methods and why some people reach the top than I could have ever learnt by working on those three days.
Comments via Blogger:
nice post keep blogging .
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