Snooker balls: How to get started with snooker trick shots

By Snooker Jim •  Updated: 06/14/23 •  4 min read

Snooker trick shots on Snooker Spot

There are many benefits to learning snooker trick shots. They help to improve your angles, you learn pace and you can boost your confidence.

You may be wondering which shots to try first, and then how to build on that. If you are, then keep reading – we will give you some tips.

Banana shot

Position two red balls by the two corner pockets – it does not matter at which end.

After that, position the cue ball by one of them. When you hit the shot, aim for top spin, looking to hit the ball on the top right.

Try and hit the shot with medium speed and power. The first red ball, the one you placed the ball close to, should just go straight into the pocket, and then the cue ball should spin around and knock the other red ball into the pocket.

As you build up confidence with this, place a couple of other balls into a group at the bottom of the table to give you something to aim your spin around.

Close to the pockets

If the cue ball is facing the pocket, and you do not have an easy angle to pot the ball at the other pocket, then this is a shot to practice.

Place the cue ball towards the middle of the table, but closer to the baulk line, and put two balls either side of it.

Aim the cue ball for the inside pocket with plenty of power. What should happen is the cue ball should deflect onto the outside pocket and roll up.

If you leave the black, or any other ball by the pocket, then the cue ball should just roll up and knock the ball into the pocket.

This is particularly handy to practice for tight angles.

Splitting balls

In the middle of the table, place two balls there, with the black ball in front of thm, or another ball there.

The aim of this shot is to pot the black ball. To do this, put plenty of screw onto the ball, keeping relatively close to the centre of the ball.

The cue ball should leave the table, and the power generated will allow the black ball to split the two balls close together, and advance to the pocket.

This is a good exercise to get you to try and make shots for yourself.

On the bed

If you have a ball close to the pocket, but right on the bed, then this is a good shot to practice.

Place the ball to want to pot by the pocket, but on the bed so it is not an easy angle to get the ball in.

After that, put the cue ball close by, close enough to get a decent shot off.

Aim the cue ball well over to the right, make sure you get plenty of spin onto the ball. The aim of the shot is to get the black ball, or whatever ball you choose for the exercise, into the groove of the pocket.

Make sure you hit the ball towards the end of it, and it should roll along, end up in the groove and go into the pocket.

Cushion trick shot

When you are in a snooker, and you’ve got got a lot of balls around with no obvious way out, then this is a shot to practice.

Place the cue ball next to the bed by a pocket, with two balls next to it. The black ball should be close to the pocket by you.

Aim for the side of the corner pocket, if you hit it at the right angle, it will ricochet onto the other side of that pocket, and come back down.

If you have done everything correctly, then it should hit the black ball and go in.

Looking for more advice? Check out our post on snooker practice drills to improve your safety play.

Snooker Jim

Gone from a 6ft table in my dad's garage as a kid to a 9ft table at the office, with the full-size snooker club visits in between. Hoping one day to get the playing technique right.