fcsnooker - Top Quality Snooker Coaching and Instruction in association with Mr Frank Callan - The Mind Game -
"Reach For The Top"

Any aspiring youngster with ambitions of reaching the top requires five qualities and a bit of luck.


This is a gift we are blessed with at birth. Some players have more natural talent than others, and at the top of my list in this respect are Jimmy White, Ronnie O'Sullivan and Stephen Hendry with Steve Davis, Mark Williams and John Higgins not all that far behind.

Players with so much natural talent, whatever they're chosen sport, are the lucky ones because they start off with something they haven't had to work for.


Anyone who believes he can play the game properly by picking up a cue when he feels like it and going into a match without any preparation is playing the wrong card. To succeed in the game today you have to be highly dedicated, as there are too many good players around who will make you pay dearly for having the wrong attitude.

John Virgo puts it well; "Success comes before work only in the dictionary"

Nobody gets out of the game more than they put in.


This is something you will require to make the best use of any natural talent you may possess. A number of players have never received any coaching whatsoever and have never bothered to find out from any source just what can happen at the table in regard to grip, sighting, stance and cue action. They have relied on their own ability and nothing more to carry them through

It is essential that you increase your understanding of every aspect of the game of snooker.


Shot selection is of paramount importance in any game of snooker. A player has to decide whether to attack and get into a winning position or, because of the risk involved, play safe in such a way that his opponent will eventually leave him in a better situation from which to take charge of the frame. Making these decisions are by no means easy, and you are alone when faced with them.

Whatever shot is chosen, it has to be given 100 per cent concentration. It is so important to know what shot to play, particularly at the start of a frame when a player has broken off and disturbed the reds. With a total of 22 balls on the table, there are thousands of different situations which can arise, and how to deal with them requires the utmost consideration each time.


Talent to be able to play snooker is not much use without bottle or nerve, particularly at the big moment, on a big occasion, in front of a big crowd. No matter how good you are at the practice table or against lesser opponents, you are wasting your time if you are unable to cope with the pressures that will arise on your way to the top.

Snooker is no different to any other sport when it comes to bottle, and the top players demonstrate what it's all about as they go in search of the major prizes.


In all honesty I have to add that luck plays its part in a game of snooker.

We all know, in one ball games like cricket, football and tennis, how much luck can influence a result. That being so, how much more luck then, is involved when there are 22 balls on the area of play? Moving the cue ball a hundredth of an inch can mean the difference between a player winning a frame in one visit to the table and allowing his opponent to take control because of the trouble he himself is in.

I don't agree with people who pretend that luck plays no part, and think if you accept that fact then you must try to do something about it. Sometimes it might appear that you are just not going to win whatever happens. But luck will even itself out, especially in longer matches, although not in one frame snooker or best of 3 or 5 frame matches.

The only thing we can do is to recognize luck and, when it does go our way, take advantage of it. Don't feel guilty or lose concentration because of it. It's all part of the game. If luck goes the other way and an opponent gets the nudges that make things helpful for him and awkward for you, you should change your tactics by not taking as many chances as you would have if the breaks were going your way.

Recognise luck for what it is, then learn how to deal with it. If you are resentful of the other man's good fortune this can make you play worse. If you dwell on it too much you can kid yourself that luck is the only reason you are losing.

You then use this as an excuse for failure when with focused determination, you can still win the match.

Frank Callan Suite - 282 Ribbleton Lane, Ribbleton, Preston, Lancashire, England - PR1 5EB - tel. + 44 (0) 1772 702211 - info@fcsnooker.co.uk

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The Frank Callan Suite - 282 Ribbleton Lane, Preston, Lancashire, England - PR1 5EB
tel. + 44 (0) 1772 702211 - info@fcsn

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