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APA Masters Championship

Rules For Participation

The APA Poolplayer Championships and Showdown Series events (collectively the “Tournament”) are operated and administered by American Poolplayers Association, Inc. and its affiliated leagues in Canada and Japan (collectively, “APA”).  APA acting through its designated officials, including APA’s Handicap Review Committee (“HRC”) is the Tournament Director for this Tournament.  As Tournament Director, APA has the full, absolute and final authority to make all rulings, decisions and judgments, in the exercise of its sole discretion, on all issues and matters related to this Tournament.  The Tournament Director’s rulings, determinations and judgments are final.
This is a handicapped tournament.  Skill levels are calculated using The Equalizer® Handicapping System.  For more information regarding The Equalizer®, refer to the APA Official Team Manual (“OTM”).
Tournament slots are obtained from your Local League Operator.

The following are rules applicable to this Tournament:

  1. You must have submitted an Entry Form and entry fee prior to June 19, 2019.
  2. The enclosed Official Rules of the APA Masters Championship are applicable throughout this Tournament except where such rules conflict with these Rules of Participation.
  3. You must be at least 18 years of age to participate.
  4. There is an enforced casual dress code described in the Event Program.
  5. Any player that the Tournament Director considers inappropriately dressed will be asked to change.
  6. It is the responsibility of every player to verify that each opponent has a qualifying Photo ID that positively identifies that player as being the person shown on the scoresheet. Do not assume a player is who they say they are.  If, prior to the lag, your opponent has not voluntarily presented their Photo ID for verification, it is your responsibility to request to see their Photo ID.  If you believe your opponent is not the person identified on the scoresheet you must notify a Referee before the lag and ask the Referee to examine the identity of the questioned player.  If the Referee cannot readily verify the player’s identity from the Photo ID, they may consult the Tournament Director.  All decisions made by the Tournament Director regarding a player’s identity are made in the Tournament Director’s sole discretion and judgment, and are final.  If you fail to verify your opponent’s identity prior to the lag and it is later determined an opposing player turns out to be an imposter or to not have a valid Photo ID, you may be bound by the results of the match and you may not be granted any relief or remedy in the Tournament Director’s sole judgment and discretion.  If a player is put up to play and does not have their Photo ID, the match will be forfeited to the player’s opponent without right of protest or appeal.  This rule will be enforced regardless of whether the player’s Photo ID was lost, left somewhere, or the player needs to go get it.  Anyone posing as someone they are not and/or any player who cannot verify that they are the registered participant identified on the scoresheet is subject to immediate disqualification from the Tournament and is subject to indefinite suspension from participation in APA, in APA’s sole judgment and discretion.
  7. Any player entering the Tournament under fraudulent or false pretenses or participating in the Tournament under fraudulent or false pretenses will be disqualified. Players may also be disqualified for irregularities or falsification of any scoresheet, or for sportsmanship violations affecting the integrity of the Tournament, APA or the sport. APA has the absolute and final authority to make all rulings. Disqualification from this event for any reason will mean forfeiture of all titles, awards, and prize money, and minimum two year suspension from the League.  Disqualification can occur prior to, during, or after the event.
  8. APA reserves the authority, at its sole discretion, to make modifications to the rules, format or any other aspect of the Tournament.
  9. If this Event is cancelled for any reason, you understand that your only remedy is a refund of your entry fee.
  10. Roster changes will not be accepted at the Tournament site in Las Vegas.
  11. Teams entering this Event can be any combination of men or women, and have up to 4 players on their roster. Teams choose 3 of the 4 team members to participate in each match.  There is no skill level limit.
  12. Players may only participate on one team competing in this Masters Championship.
  13. To be eligible for this Tournament:
  • Every member of the team’s roster must be from the same League area.
  • Players who are participating on a Masters Division roster must have either: at least ten (10) 8-Ball and/or 9-Ball scores (either from one format, or the other, or a combination of the two formats); at least ten (10)  matches played in the Masters Division of the League from which they qualified; or at least ten (10)  scores/matches of 8-Ball, 9-Ball and/or Masters, within the one year period between June 19, 2018 and June 19, 2019.
  • Players who do not participate on a Masters Division roster must have either: at least twenty (20) 8-Ball and/or 9-Ball scores (either from one format, or the other, or a combination of the two formats); twenty (20) matches played in the Masters Division of the League from which they qualified; or any combination of twenty (20) scores/matches between 8-Ball, 9-Ball and Masters within the two-year period between June 19, 2017 and June 19, 2019.
  • All players must also: have played at least four (4) times, in either the 8-Ball format, 9-Ball format or Master Division, in the Spring Session in the League area from which the team qualified to be eligible to play in this Tournament; and be on an active, Summer Session APA roster in either the standard 8‑Ball or 9-Ball format or on a Masters Division roster, in the League from which they qualified.
  1. The Tournament Entry Fee is $150 per team. There will be no refunds issued to no-shows or to entrants who are disqualified.
  2. The maximum number of teams that can enter this Modified Single Elimination tournament is 256.  The size of the board and the breakdown of prize money will be based on the number of entries.

 

GAME RULES

A match will result in a forfeit if a player is not at the table and ready to begin within 15 minutes of the appointed time.

 Players lag, with the winner of the lag having choice of format (8-Ball or 9-Ball) or the break.  Each individual match is a race-to-7 (8 games of 9-Ball and 5 games of 8-Ball).  Once the format has been chosen, the entire set of that format must be completed before moving to the next format: or 7 games have been won.

Each individual match is worth one point.  The first team to win 2 out of 3 individual matches wins the team match.  A forfeited individual player match is worth 1 point.

8-BALL GAME RULES

  1. GENERAL DESCRIPTION – 8-Ball is played with a cue ball and a normal rack of 15 object balls. The primary purpose of this game is for one player to pocket the solid balls numbered from 1 to 7 or the striped balls numbered from 9 to 15, and then calling and pocketing the 8-ball before their opponent.  Choice of balls to be pocketed is made by the player legally pocketing the first ball of the game.
  2. RACKING – All balls should be frozen (touching) as tightly as possible. Balls are racked with the front ball on the foot spot and the 8-ball in the center of the triangle.  The breaking player may request and receive a rerack.
  3. BREAKING – To be a legal break, players must break from behind the head string. The head ball or the second row of balls must be struck first and at least four object balls must be driven to the rails or a ball must be pocketed.  The cue ball may not be shot into a rail before the rack.  If the rack is struck, but the break does not qualify as legal, the balls are reracked and rebroken by the same player.  If the rack is struck, but the break does not qualify as legal and results in a scratch, the balls are reracked and broken by the opposite player.  THE RACK MUST BE STRUCK BEFORE A FOUL CAN OCCUR.  Breaking safe or soft is not allowed.  Breaking just hard enough to comply with this rule is not a guarantee against penalties.  Remember; break as hard as you can with control.
  4. AFTER THE BREAK – Various circumstances can occur upon completion of the break. They are:
  • A foul on a legal break will result in ball-in-hand behind the head string and the incoming player has an open table as defined in “4e”. The incoming player may then shoot at any ball that is outside the head string.  Outside the head string is determined by aligning the middle or base of the ball with the imaginary line (head string) between the centers of the two appropriate diamonds.

If an object ball is dead center on the head string, or out, then it is playable.  If it is in, the ball is not playable.  If the two players cannot agree on an object ball being in or out, then a Tournament Official is consulted for an opinion and their opinion is final.  To shoot at a ball that is in could be considered a sportsmanship violation.

The cue ball must be in as described above before play can begin.  It is up to the opponent to check to be sure the cue ball is in before it is shot.  This is not a foul; no penalty may be assessed.  If the cue ball is out, the shooter must place the cue ball behind the head string.  To refuse and shoot anyway would be considered a sportsmanship violation.

  • No balls are pocketed and it is the other player’s turn.
  • The 8-ball is pocketed. This is a win unless the player scratches, in which case he loses.
  • A ball is pocketed; it is still the breaker’s turn and he continues shooting the category of balls he just made.
  • A ball of each category is pocketed (for example, the 6-ball and the 12-ball).  Now the breaker has his choice.  He may shoot any ball except the 8-ball (which would be a foul); if he does not foul, anything that goes in counts.  If he were to make one of each on his second shot, he would still have an open table and the same choice as after the break.  If he were to miss or foul on his second shot, his opponent would have an open table.  If the opponent then shoots and makes a ball, but also fouls on the shot, it is still an open tableOpen table means a player can shoot a combination involving a stripe and a solid and whichever he makes, without committing a foul, would become his category for the remainder of the game.
  • If two balls of one category and one ball of the other category are pocketed (for example, the 3-ball, the 6-ball, and the 10-ball) it is the shooter’s choice just as in “4e” above.

Occasionally, a player mistakenly starts shooting the wrong category of balls. Although it is sportsmanlike for the sitting player to remind the shooting player that he is about to foul by shooting the wrong category of balls, it is not a requirement for him to do so.  Once the shooter has hit the wrong category of balls, the foul has occurred whether the ball is pocketed or not.  If the ball is pocketed, it is permissible, though not recommended, that the sitting player allow the shooting player to continue shooting his balls in until he feels inclined to call the foul.  The shooting player can escape penalty by quietly realizing his error and returning to shoot the correct category of balls and legally contacting one of them before his opponent calls foul, or by finishing off the wrong category of balls and legally contacting the 8-ball prior to his opponent calling a foul.  In other words, the sitting player must call the foul before the shooter returns to the correct category and legally contacts one, or before the shooter pockets the remaining balls of the wrong category and legally contacts the 8‑ball.  Once a player makes legal contact with the 8-ball, the player assumes control of that category of wrongly pocketed balls and can win the game by legally pocketing the 8-ball.  In addition, if the sitting player does not call a foul before his opponent’s turn ends, and subsequently contacts the wrong category himself, both players will assume the new category of balls for the remainder of the game.  Before any foul has occurred, the shooter also may avoid penalty by asking the sitting player which category of balls he has.  The sitting player must tell him the truth.

 

  1. COMBINATION SHOTS – Combination shots are legal, but striking the correct ball first is required except in the open table The 8-ball is not neutral.  A player is credited with all balls he legally pockets.  When a player does not pocket one of his balls, but pockets an opponent’s ball, he loses his turn.  The opponent gets credit for the pocketed ball.  No pocketed ball is ever spotted.
  2. BALLS ON THE FLOOR – Knocking the cue ball off the playing surface is a foul. If the 8-ball is knocked on the floor, it is loss of game.  Knocking any other object ball on the floor is not a foul.  Object balls that get knocked off the playing surface will be spotted on the foot spot. If the foot spot is taken, the ball will be placed on a line directly behind the foot spot as close to the foot spot as possible.  If two or more balls are knocked on the floor, they are placed in numerical order with the lowest numbered ball closest to the foot spot; the placed balls will be frozen to one another.  It might occur that a player legally pockets a ball while simultaneously knocking some other ball(s) on the floor.  In this situation, it is still his turn and the ball(s) is not spotted until he misses.  If the ball on the floor is one of the shooter’s balls, then it is spotted when the shooter has pocketed all of his other balls or misses.
  3. POCKETED BALLS – Balls must remain in a pocket to be legal. If a ball goes in a pocket, but bounces back onto the playing surface, it is not considered pocketed.  If it is the 8‑ball, it is not to be considered as either a win or a loss.  If it is the cue ball, it is not to be considered a scratch.

Note 1:    If a ball which has been hanging in a pocket for more than a few seconds suddenly falls in, it is to be placed back on the table where it was originally sitting.  Once a ball has stopped all motion, it cannot move again without outside forces affecting it.  So, if it falls in a pocket, it is to be placed back on the table where it was before it fell.

Note 2:    It occasionally happens on tables with small pockets that two balls become jammed in a pocket and are leaning over the edge of the slate to some degree.  They are off the playing surface and are pocketed.  Drop them in and resume playing the game unless the pocketing ends the game (8-ball or cue ball scratch when shooting the 8-ball).

 

  1. ONE FOOT ON THE FLOOR – At least one foot must be on the floor at all times while shooting if a bridge stick is present. There is no foul, simply stop the shooter and hand him the bridge.

 

Exception:  Players shooting from a wheelchair must remain seated in the wheelchair while shooting.

 

  1. FOULS – If any of the following fouls are committed, the penalty is ball-in-hand for the incoming player. Make certain you have ball-in-hand before you touch the cue ball.  Confirm it with your opponent before touching the cue ball.  Ball‑in‑hand means you get to put the cue ball anywhere on the table (with the exception of a scratch on the break which result in ball-in-hand behind the head string), and shoot any of your balls (or the 8-ball, if all of your balls have been pocketed) regardless of where that ball is.  A player exercising his rights under the ball-in-hand rule may place the cue ball on the table anywhere he desires.

Even after having addressed the cue ball a player may, if not satisfied with the placement, make further adjustments with the hand, cue stick or any other reasonable piece of equipment.  A foul may be called only if the player fouls the cue ball while actually stroking the cue ball, meaning a double hit of the cue ball (sometimes called double clutching).  The ball-in-hand rule penalizes a player for an error.  Without this rule, a person can actually benefit by accidentally or purposely scratching or otherwise fouling.  In the unlikely event that a game should ever become stalemated, meaning that neither player wants or can make use of ball-in-hand, then the balls would be reracked and the same player breaks.

 

The following are the only fouls resulting in ball-in-hand:

  1. Anytime during a shot, the cue ball goes in a pocket, on the floor, or otherwise ends up off the playing surface.
  2. Failure to hit a correct ball first. (A player who is shooting stripes must hit a striped ball first.) The 8-ball is not neutral. In general, the shooter has the advantage in close hit situations unless his opponent has asked an official to watch the hit.  Protect yourself.  If you think your opponent is getting ready to shoot a shot that could possibly be a bad hit, stop him from shooting and call a Tournament Official to watch the shot.  Potential bad hit situations are usually fairly obvious and protests and disputes over these close situations can almost always be avoided if an official is asked to watch the shot.  If the Tournament Official cannot determine which ball was struck first, such as a simultaneous hit, the call goes to the shooter.
  3. Failure to hit a rail after contact. A rail must be hit by either the cue ball or any other ball after the cue ball and the object ball contact.   A pocketed ball counts as a rail.  Even if the ball bounces back onto the playing surface, it is considered to have hit a rail, as the pocket liner if part of the rail.  A sentence that should answer many questions is:  ANY ball must go to a rail AFTER LEGAL contact.
  4. The object ball is frozen to a rail and the player is contemplating playing a safety. In order for the following frozen ball rule to be in effect, the opponent must declare that the ball is frozen and the player should verify.  Once it is agreed that the ball is frozen, then the player must either drive the object ball to another rail (of course, it could hit another ball, which in turn hits a rail), or drive the cue ball to the rail after it touches the object ball.  If the latter method of safety is chosen then the player should take care that he quite obviously strikes the object ball first.  Unlike simultaneous hits between object balls, if the cue ball strikes the rail first or appears to hit both the rail and ball simultaneously, then it would be a foul unless either the cue ball or object ball went to some other rail.
  5. It is illegal and, therefore, a foul to jump a cue ball over another ball by scooping it up in the air on purpose.
  6. Receiving illegal aid (coaching) during a match. It is not considered illegal aid to remind a player to call the 8-ball, or to tell a player a foul has occurred.  Anyone may do so.
  7. Causing even the slightest movement or altering the course of the cue ball, even accidentally, is a foul. Even dropping the chalk on the cue ball is a foul.  It is not a foul, however, to accidentally move any other balls (including the 8-ball) unless, during his turn at the table, a player moves a ball and it in turn comes in contact with the cue ball.  Any balls moved accidentally during a shot must be replaced by the opponent after the shot is over and all balls have stopped rolling.  If during the course of the shot, another ball stops in the position previously occupied by the accidentally moved ball, the opponent must place the accidentally moved ball, in an ethical manner, as close as possible to its original position. If it occurs before the shot, it must be replaced by the opponent before the shot is taken.

 

Exception:  If an accidentally moved ball comes in contact with the cue ball, creating a foul, no object ball will be replaced.

 

  1. If, during the course of a shot, the cue ball does not touch anything.
  2. Exercise caution when placing the cue ball in a ball-in-hand situation.  The cue ball is always alive. If the cue ball, or the hand holding or moving it, touches another ball it is a cue ball foul and your opponent has ball-in-hand.  Be especially careful when you are placing the cue ball in a tight spot.

 

  1. WAYS TO LOSE:

 

  1. Your opponent pockets his numerical group and legally pockets the 8-ball.
  2. You pocket the 8-ball out-of-turn or knock it on the floor.
  3. When playing the 8-ball, you pocket the 8-ball in the wrong pocket or fail to properly call the pocket where the 8-ball went in.
  4. You foul the cue ball and then pocket the 8-ball.
  5. When playing the 8-ball, you scratch. You lose whether or not you pocket the 8-ball.

 

Note: If you are shooting at the 8-ball and miss it altogether without scratching, you have fouled and your opponent has ball‑in‑hand, but you don’t lose because of this foul.

 

  1. A game is lost if you alter the course of the 8-ball or the cue ball in a game losing situation.

 

Example:   You are shooting the 4-ball, miss the pocket, and the 4-ball hits the 8-ball.  The 8-ball is going towards the pocket and you reach out and stop it and try to claim that it is only a ball-in-hand foul.  Wrong, it is loss of game.

 

Example:   You are shooting at the 8-ball and miss the pocket and the 8-ball is heading towards the wrong pocket or the cue ball is heading towards a pocket.  You reach out and stop the ball and claims that it is only a ball-in-hand foul.  Wrong, it is loss of game.

 

  1. HOW TO WIN – You have won the game when all the balls of your numerical group have been pocketed and you have legally pocketed the 8-ball in a properly called pocket without scratching.

 

Note:     You may not play the 8-ball at the same time you play the last ball of your category. The 8-ball must be a separate shot.

 

 

9-BALL GAME RULES

Many of the rules concerning 9-Ball are similar to those used in 8‑Ball.  When this is the case, it will be so indicated.  The rest of the details concerning 9-Ball follow.

 

  1. GENERAL DESCRIPTION – 9-Ball is played with a cue ball and nine object balls numbered 1 through 9. 9-Ball is a rotation game, meaning the balls are shot in numerical order.  The shooter must strike the lowest numbered ball on the table first.  The game is over when the 9-ball is pocketed.  A player retains his turn at the table as long as he strikes the lowest numbered ball first and legally pockets a ball.  He need not pocket the lowest numbered ball to continue shooting.  He may, for example, shoot the 1-ball into the 4-ball thus pocketing the 4.  He would continue shooting and must, once again, strike the 1‑ball first.  If the shooter shoots the 1-ball into the 9-ball and the 9-ball is pocketed, the game is over.
  2. RACKING – Nine balls are used and are racked in a diamond shape. The 1-ball is at the front of the rack and on the foot spot.  The 9-ball is in the center and the rest of the object balls can be placed in any numerical order.
  1. BREAKING – The same as 8-Ball except the head ball (1-ball) must be struck first.
  2. AFTER THE BREAK – Various circumstances can occur upon completion of the break.  They are:
  • A foul on a legal break will result in ball-in-hand anywhere on the table for the breaker’s opponent. Pocketed balls, if any, stay down (are not spotted), except the 9-ball.
  • No balls are pocketed and it is the other player’s turn.
  • The 9-ball is pocketed.  This is a win unless the player scratches, in which case the 9-ball is spotted and the turn passes to his opponent.
  • A ball or a number of balls are pocketed.  It is still the breaker’s turn and he shoots at the lowest numbered ball on the table.
  • Occasionally it occurs that a player mistakenly shoots the wrong ball.  Although it is sportsmanlike for the sitting player to remind the shooting player he is about to foul by shooting the wrong ball, he is not required to do so.  Once the shooter has hit the wrong ball, the foul has occurred whether the ball is pocketed or not.  If the ball is pocketed, it is permissible, though not recommended, that the sitting player allow the shooting player to continue shooting until he feels inclined to call the foul.  The shooting player can escape penalty by quietly realizing his error and returning to shoot the correct ball and striking it first on a shot prior to his opponent calling the foul.  In other words, the sitting player must call the foul before the shooter has shot the correct ball.
  • On the shot immediately following a legal break, the shooter may play a push out. On a push out, the cue ball is not required to contact any object ball or any rail.  The player must announce his intention of playing a push out before the shot, or the shot is considered to be a normal shot.  Any ball pocketed on a push out does not count and is spotted.  Following a legal push out, the incoming player is permitted to shoot from that position or pass the shot back to the player who pushed out.  A push out is not considered to be a foul as long as no rule is violated.  An illegal push out is penalized according to the type of foul committed.
  1. COMBINATION SHOTS – Combination shots are legal and extremely common in 9-Ball. Just make sure to hit the lowest numbered ball on the table first.
  1. BALLS ON FLOOR – Knocking the cue ball off the playing surface is a foul. Knocking an object ball on the floor is not a foul. Object balls that get knocked off the playing surface will be immediately spotted on the foot spot.  If the foot spot is taken, the ball will be placed on a line directly behind the foot spot as close to the foot spot as possible.  If two or more balls are knocked on the floor, they are placed in numerical order with the lowest numbered ball closest to the foot spot.  Spotted balls are frozen to one another.  It might occur that a player legally pockets a ball while simultaneously knocking some other ball(s) on the floor. In this situation, the ball(s) is spotted and the player continues shooting until he misses.
  1. POCKETED BALLS – Balls must remain in a pocket to be legal. If a ball goes in a pocket but bounces back onto the playing surface, it is not considered pocketed.

 

Note:       It occasionally happens on tables with small pockets that two balls become jammed in a pocket and are leaning over the edge of the slate to some degree.  They are off the playing surface and are pocketed.  Drop them in and resume playing the game unless the pocketing ends the game.

 

  1. SPOTTING BALLS – Other than the circumstances described in BALLS ON THE FLOOR and the push out rule, the only ball that would ever be spotted would be the 9-ball when the shooter has pocketed the 9‑ball and scratched or otherwise fouled. If the shooter makes the 9‑ball on the break and fouls or scratches, the 9-ball (and only the 9‑ball) is spotted.  If the shooter is shooting at the object ball and plays it into the 9-ball and pockets the 9-ball, but scratches or otherwise fouls in the process, the 9‑ball is spotted.  The incoming player has ball-in-hand and will be shooting at the lowest numbered ball on the table.

 

Note 1:  If a ball which has been hanging in a pocket for more than a few seconds suddenly falls in, it is to be placed back on the table where it was originally sitting. Once a ball has stopped all motion, it cannot move again without outside forces affecting it. So, if it falls in a pocket, it is to be placed back on the table where it was before it fell.

 

Note 2: It occasionally happens on tables with small pockets that two balls become jammed in a pocket and are leaning over the edge of the slate to some degree. They are off the playing surface and are considered pocketed. Drop them in and resume playing the game unless the pocketing ends the game.

 

  1. FOULS – The same as 8-Ball except as follows:

 

  1. The exception concerning scratching on the break does not apply to 9-Ball.  Scratching on the break is ball-in-hand anywhere just as other fouls.
  2. The foul concerning striking the correct ball first applies, but ignore the reference to stripes or solids.
  3. The foul concerning illegal aid still applies, but ignore the reference to reminding a player to call the 8-ball.  The 9-ball does not have to be called; therefore, the pocket the 9-ball is going to be pocketed in does not have to be called.

 

PLEASE NOTE: 

 Coaching and timeouts are not permitted in this event.

 Matches will not be postponed due to participation in multiple events.  Once a match has started, play must be continuous between shooters.

 The three consecutive foul rule will not be used in this tournament.

 Jump cues will be allowed in this tournament.  It is also permissible to break down a cue or switch cues to make a jump shot.

 SUDDEN DEATH – This format is implemented 2 hours and 30 minutes into a match.  Each team match must be in the 3rd individual match by the 2-hours-and-30-minutes mark, or all subsequent matches become a race to two games.

 The rack must be broke to avoid sudden death.

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