elnino wrote:... a red is inadvertently pocketed as a result of the equipment disintegrating before or during the execution of the stroke...
The emoji is accurate; I literally lost my coffee on this one.
Elnino, please do not be offended by this question, but are you a native English speaker? If the answer is no, I commend you; your comprehension, grammar, and usage seem to be probably better than most native speakers. I only ask because you seemed to make this statement with a straight face. Again, please don't be offended by the question because your communication skills are excellent no matter the answer.
If you don't understand why this strikes me funny, it is because "disintegrating" is a term more commonly used when an outer space alien points a death ray gun at you and you disappear in a pile of dust. If this were to ever happen during a frame of snooker, I think I would have much bigger concerns than whether to replace the red ball or not!
I have a feeling that you probably meant to use a different word; I am not exactly sure what word was intended, but I do understand exactly what you mean by the statement.
So getting back on topic, you are exactly correct. To paraphrase the rule that you are referencing, it essentially imposes no liability on the striker for sub-standard house equipment. The most common problem is the head of the rest falling off the end of the stick because the wooden threads have been stripped away. This doesn't happen professionally because a part of the referee's job is to thoroughly examine all equipment prior to a match, essentially like a pilot walking around the airplane to check that the duct tape on the motors is still sticky enough. (
Sorry, I am still giddy from the above.)
So the striker cannot be held responsible for things outside his control: referee, spectators, house equipment. However, the striker is definitely responsible for things that are under his control or in his possession. For instance, if you strike the cue ball and the tip falls off your cue and onto the surface of the table, then a ball rolls toward and bumps into the now unattached tip, this would be a foul. It is yours, you are responsible (and this is true even if it is a house cue or borrowed from someone as you are still responsible for it). Similarly, Mark Williams had a famous folly a few years ago. He thought he would use his extension for a shot, changed his mind, and set it on the table surface. His cueing was tenuous over several balls and using a rest. He saw the white heading toward his forgotten extension but could not snatch away his set up to grab the extension as he would have disturbed the other balls with his cue and rest. The white bumped and "Foul". This did not result in any balls being replaced because, as you stated, replacement may only happen in a circumstance of a red going in a pocket if this gave a benefit to the fouling player or if the interference was considered by the referee to be intentional.
This made me think of another answer to your original question of when the referee might replace reds after a foul....
There is a "catch-all" statement in the Rules that essentially says that the referee has complete power to do anything he believes is appropriate for the situation. To quote it, Section 5., Rule 1. The Referee says that the referee shall:
"... be free to make a decision in the interests of fair play for any situation not covered adequately by Rule"
and here is an example where that would come into play. Say that the striker has just potted a red, there is one red still on the table in the jaws of a pocket, and he is now up by 34 points. The striker misses his attempt at colour and in his movements, sweeps the last red into the pocket with his elbow or something. Even with the four point penalty, the non-striker now needs snookers to win, but he did not before the foul. The referee would interpret this foul, whether intentional or not, as providing an advantage to the fouling player and he would replace that red back into the jaws of the pocket from whence it came.
There's probably more possible situations, but you get the idea.