I would have to owe you out of my benefit cheques if I lose.’
No problem with me. I have a ton on me here.’ Nobby flashed a wad that would have choked a horse.
“I don’t know, mate a ton is a lot.’ are you sure you want to play for that amount of money.’
“Listen mate I will play you for two hundred if you like he bragged.
“Alright then I will play you for two hundred quid but give the money to Gerry the bar man to hold.’
Hey Gerry come here a minute will you.’
Gerry walked over to where Nobby was standing.’
“We got ourselves a game going; here see if you can get the punters to have a bet on me beating banjo man here. “I will give six to one that he cannot beat me.’
“Gerry called for quiet then told the bar that there was a pool game going on and if anyone wanted a bet at 6-1 on the banjo man to beat Nobby come and see him.’
Billy went over to Gerry and whispered something in his ear then came back to the table they spun for break and this time it was Billy who broke off and he smashed the pack and two solids went down. He played like a seasoned pro as he calmly went around the table knocking in ball after ball. He was left with a black ball for game to seven- ball his opponent.’ Four cushions I think Nobby.’
Nobby smiled knowing that Billy had missed playing a three cushion shot.
“Wait said Nobby how about another bet that you cannot make this shot.
“Okay how much?’
“Five hundred quid.’
“Hey come on Nobby; that’s four months in benefits to me mate plus my buskin’ money.’
“You can make that in no time outside of the train station.’
“If the coppers don’t chase me maybe.’
“I mean if I miss you are going to get £700 quid out of me.’
“Look banjo man either back your bull or fuckin’ shut up.’
Billy looked at Gerry; then back at Nobby; 6-1 odds then said Billy?’
“Aye go on you’ll never do it.’
Billy looked at the angles again then chalked his cue as every one gathered around to watch Billy take his shot he got down and placed top spin on the cue ball with a touch of right hand side.
The crowd went quiet as Billy feathered the ball drew his cue back to watch the cue ball hit one, two three, then four cushions before Billy stood over the pocket where he wanted the cue ball to finish. the black rolled and rolled and slowly went towards the pocket before dropping with a clink into the bag.’
“Good game said Billy as he shook hands with the young kid. I got lucky this time but “I will give you a chance to win your money back if we play double or quits.’
“Go on said Slick I will stake you.’
“I will let you break said Billy.’
“Come on Nobby shouted the punters; fuckin’ back your bull or shut the fuck up.’
“Right you’re fuckin’ on.’
Gerry took the stake from Slick and Nobby got down and smashed the balls; a stripe dropped but all the other striped balls were in awkward positions. He tried to run one along the cushion but it rattled then came out again.
“An ooh emitted from the crowd as Billy then doubled an orange solid into the middle and proceeded to pot ball after ball until he got down to the black again.’