This week I would like to discuss the Mark Roth Marshall Holmen doubles competition, and continue to elaborate on a previous article I wrote called Three Strike Lines to Success. In my previous article I discussed the importance of being a versatile player and being able to throw different strike lines. I discussed the advantages and disadvantages to playing the outside, track, and inside part of the lane. In my previous article I explained that the inside line gives the professionals the best chance to strike a due to the greater angle of coming into the pocket. In the Mark Roth Marshall Holman Doubles Championship, it was different and I’ll explain why.
Instead of breaking down every match this week, we will just take a look at the title match which was Norm Duke and Wes Malott vs Sean Rash and Ronnie Russell. Duke started off the match playing right up second arrow (10 board), and came in a little too strong and left a makeable spare which he converted. Sean started off the match way inside he was at about the 35th board throwing to the 12th board. The ball never came all the way back to the pocket and left the 2,4,10. Ronnie followed up by starting his feet at about the 30th board and hit the same 12th board at the break point going through the nose and left a makeable spare which he converted on. Wes Malott then threw a ball from another planet in which is plant foot was actually next to the gutter, than ended up on the 10th board at the break point, and struck right into the pocket. Rash and Russell had 3 open frames within first 4 frames of the match because although they were playing extremely inside they didn’t have a great enough angle to the pocket to carry properly. Duke and Malott stayed clean all the way through 8 frames, and proved again that the greater the angle to the pocket the better the score as they defeated Rash and Russell 193 to 167.
A simple way I have found to pay attention to whether or not your ball is coming in at the right angle to the pocket is to watch where the ball finishes in the pits. If the ball is finishing to the right side of the rack you need to create more angle to the pocket. If you’re ball finished dead center and shreds the rack, don’t change a thing. If the ball finishes a little left in the pits and still strikes, this is a good indication that you may need to make a transition in soon. So remember it doesn’t matter what line you play, but the greater the angle it comes to the pocket at the break point.
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