Eight-ball (also spelled 8-ball or eightball, and sometimes called solids and stripes, spots and stripes[1] or rarely highs and lows) is a pool billiards played on a billiard table with six pockets, cue sticks, and sixteen billiard balls: a cue ball and fifteen object balls. The object balls include seven solid-colored balls numbered 1 through 7, seven striped balls numbered 9 through 15, and the black 8 ball. After the balls are scattered with a break shot, a player is assigned either the group of solid or striped balls once they have legally pocketed a ball from that group. The object of the game is to legally pocket the 8-ball in a “called” pocket, which can only be done after all of the balls from a player’s assigned group have been cleared from the table.

Pool game popular in much of the world
This article is about the American-style game. For the British variation, see Blackball (pool). For other uses, see Eight-ball (disambiguation).

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One of numerous proper racks in standardized eight-ball: The two rear corner balls are of different suits, the 8 ball is in the center, and the apex ball is on the foot spot.
Highest governing body World Pool-Billiard Association
First played 1900s (decade)
Contact No
Team members single competitors or doubles
Mixed gender Yes
Equipment Cue sports equipment
Glossary glossary of cue sports terms
Country or region Worldwide

The game is the most frequently played discipline of pool, and is often thought of as synonymous with “pool”. The game has numerous variations, mostly regional. It is the second most played professional pool game, after nine-ball, and for the last several decades ahead of straight pool.[citation needed]

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The game of eight-ball arose around 1900 in the United States as a development of pyramid pool, which allows any eight of the fifteen object balls to be pocketed to win. The game arose from two changes made, namely that the 8 ball must be pocketed last to win, and that each player may only pocket half of the other object balls. By 1925, the game was popular enough for the Brunswick-Balke-Collender Company to introduce purpose-made ball sets with seven red, seven yellow, one black ball, and the cue ball, which allowed spectators to more easily see which suit each ball belonged to. (Such colors became standard in the later British-originating variant, blackball.) The rules, as officially codified in the Billiard Congress of America‘s rule book, were periodically revised in the years following.[2]:24,89–90[3][4][5]

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