What Are The Rules For Straight Pool Billiards?

Straight pool billiards, also known as 14.1 continuous, is a popular and strategic cue sport played with finesse and precision. In this captivating article, you will discover the essential rules that govern this exciting game. From the objective of the game to the key strategies, get ready to dive into the fascinating world of straight pool billiards and elevate your skills on the green cloth. So grab your cue, chalk it up, and let’s explore the rules that will have you breaking and running like a pro in no time!

Objective of the Game

In straight pool billiards, the objective is to score a certain number of points, typically 150, by pocketing balls in a specific manner. The goal is to be the player with the highest score at the end of the game.

Number of balls

Straight pool billiards is typically played with 15 numbered balls and a cue ball. The numbered balls range from 1 to 15, with each ball having a specific point value assigned to it.


To start a game of straight pool billiards, the balls are arranged in a triangular rack with the 1-ball at the apex and the other balls placed randomly within the rack. The rack is then placed at the foot spot on the table.

Breaking Shot

The opening shot, also known as the break shot, is taken by the player who wins the lag or a predetermined player if a lag is not used. The objective of the break shot is to scatter the racked balls and ensure a fair distribution across the table.


Legal Shot

In straight pool billiards, a legal shot requires the cue ball to strike the racked balls with sufficient force for a ball to be pocketed or hit a cushion after the initial contact. Failing to meet these conditions results in a foul.

Pocketing Balls

Players must pocket balls legally and must designate a specific called ball and pocket before each shot. Each legally pocketed ball earns the player the corresponding point value assigned to that ball. After a successful shot, the player continues their turn.


Several actions can result in a foul in straight pool billiards. Common fouls include failing to hit the racked balls, pocketing the cue ball, not hitting a cushion after legal contact, and not properly calling a shot. When a player commits a foul, their turn ends, and their opponent receives ball-in-hand, allowing them to place the cue ball anywhere on the table.


Point System

In straight pool billiards, each ball has a specific point value assigned to it. The 1-ball is worth 1 point, the 2-ball is worth 2 points, and so on, up to the 15-ball, which is worth 15 points. Players aim to accumulate the desired number of points, typically 150, to win the game.

Continuing Inning

After successfully pocketing a ball, the player continues their turn until they miss a shot or commit a foul. They can continue to shoot as long as they legally pocket balls and have not reached the target score of the game.

End of Game


In some variations of straight pool billiards, players have the option to re-break the rack if they reach the target score without committing any fouls. The re-break consists of re-racking the balls and taking another break shot.

Breaking Ties

If there is a tie at the end of the game, various tiebreaker rules can be implemented. These rules can include additional rounds, a sudden-death playoff, or a predetermined rule, such as the player with the most consecutive successful shots.

Safety Play

Defensive Shots

Safety play in straight pool billiards refers to a defensive strategy where a player intentionally leaves the cue ball in a challenging position for their opponent, making it difficult for them to pocket a ball or continue their turn effectively. This strategy involves careful shot selection and positioning to gain an advantage.

Deliberate Fouls

In certain situations, players may choose to deliberately commit a foul as a tactical move. By doing so, they aim to remove a troublesome ball from play or create a challenging position for their opponent, forcing them into a difficult shot or leaving them without a clear shot.

Common Strategies

Successful strategies in straight pool billiards involve a combination of offensive and defensive play. Players often focus on pocketing high-value balls early in the game to accumulate points quickly. They may also strategically position the cue ball after each shot to set up subsequent shots or to make it challenging for their opponents.


Pool Table

Straight pool billiards is typically played on a regulation-sized pool table, which is 9 feet in length and 4.5 feet in width. The table consists of a playing surface covered with a durable and smooth cloth, usually made of wool.


straight pool billiards utilizes a set of 15 numbered balls, which are usually made of phenolic resin or other durable materials. The balls are precisely sized and weighted for consistent gameplay.

Cue Stick

A cue stick is an essential piece of equipment in straight pool billiards. It is used to strike the cue ball and make shots. Cue sticks are typically made of wood and have a leather or phenolic tip for better control and precision.


In straight pool billiards, proper etiquette is essential to maintain a friendly and respectful playing environment. Players should follow basic etiquette guidelines such as taking turns, refraining from distracting or disrespectful behavior, and respecting the equipment and playing area.


straight pool billiards has some variations in rules and gameplay across different regions and tournaments. These variations can include differences in the target score, the number of balls used, specific fouls, or additional rules regarding re-breaking.


Straight pool billiards is an engaging and strategic game that requires players to showcase their skill and precision. By understanding the rules and guidelines of the game, players can enjoy the challenge of scoring points and outmaneuvering their opponents. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned player, straight pool billiards offers hours of fun and excitement on the pool table. So gather your friends, set up the balls, and enjoy a game of straight pool billiards!