What do you do if you try to clear and stick and your opponent gets one partially hidden? Well, you try to get it out of course but you MUST hit one or the other, the hide or the one you are chasing. Missing both is the worst thing you can do; if you hit the hide your opponent will probably try to recover his block and we all know that isn’t the easiest thing to do! “Don’t miss them both for goodness sake!”
It’s the same trying to get two blocks off with one shot. How many times have you seen games go down the drain because someone tried to get both off and missed them both? A few years ago in the National Singles at Bradenton, I was watching Hall of Famer Buck Buchanan who was at that time and is now a great player. He was playing Glen Peltier and I learned a big lesson at Buck’s expense. Buck was a couple of blocks from going out; Glen had the hammer and was at 45. Glen put one on the 7 and Buck missed, we all do from time to time. Glen put one on the other 7; Buck went for both of them and missed again. Glen put one on the eight on the same side as the first 7; Buck tried the same shot as last time and missed again. Of course, Glen put an 8 on the other side and now Buck had to get two off or he would lose the next time around; he missed them all and Glen won from 45. I learned a big lesson because if Buck could miss so could I. I made up my mind that I was going to “get one for sure” and that’s what I teach; be sure you get one! How many times has your opponent been behind and gone on the 7; you miss so he goes on the other 7, you go for two and get them and there you sit in the center of the board, right where he wanted you to begin with. Bonk, in you go, darn!
And by the way, I do mean darn! I’ve had other players say to me you can speak plainer than that meaning go ahead and use profanity. I explain to them that you just can’t allow yourself to do that because it’ll come out at just the wrong time if you allow it of yourself. A few years ago an outstanding player wanted to play on the National Team in the International Tournament and just before selection time, he let out with a profanity-laced tirade, in a tournament, with the National Presidents wife on the next court. He wasn’t selected after being a virtual lock. “Don’t lose something you really want!” Earl Ball.