Looks like no more takers on El Nino's challenge so we will put it to rest:
Now how would you judge the following two scenarios:-
1. After playing brown as a free ball, balls come to rest with green and brown obstructing access to the ball on.
(a) Would it be a foul if the green is nearest to the cue ball.
(b) What happens if the green and brown are equidistant from the cue ball.
2. After a foul, each of the last two reds are snookered by different balls not on. Striker nominates one of the snookering balls as his free ball and rolls up gently behind it, touching it in the process. Is this a foul or a fair stroke.
Cons B wrote:...
How did I do?
Cons B, I would say you did about average because, probably like most players would do, you got one of the three answers correct.
1. (a) Correct, fair stroke as Brown was nominated free ball and Green is the effective snookering ball.
1. (b) Incorrect. In the very rare event that the referee were to declare the Green and Brown as equidistant from the cue ball (as rare as the elusive "simultaneous hit" if not even more so), then BOTH balls are considered to be effective snookering entities so that it would be a foul had either of them been nominated as free ball and the balls came to rest in this position.
Another understandable point of confusion about this "equidistant" scenario is that, perhaps counter-intuitively, it is completely irrelevant what the location of the ball on is behind the effective snookering entities. Let me try to explain....the easiest explanation is that Yellow was the ball on, Brown was declared free ball, and the balls come to rest amazingly
with Green and Brown touching each other, White on one side of them touching both Green and Brown, and Yellow on the other side touching both Green and Brown...a perfect diamond! So the White is equidistant from the Green and Brown (touching both) and the Yellow has been fouled since it is effectively "co-snookered" by the free ball and Yellow is also equidistant from Green and Brown.
Now let's change that scenario just slightly. When they come to rest, all balls are now exactly like above EXCEPT the Yellow comes to rest touching the Green ball but not touching the Brown ball; you can say it is more behind the Green than it is behind the Brown. Is it still a foul? The answer is yes, foul stroke. The position of the ball on in relation to the effective snookering entities makes no difference at all, the only important part of it is that the cue ball
is equidistant from the snookering entities. One cannot say that the Yellow is "more snookered" behind the Green and "less snookered" behind Brown; it is either snookered or it is not.
But in any case, the "equidistant" scenario happens about as often as all the planets come into perfect alignment. When there is physical distance between the White and the potential effective snookering balls, the referee can use any measuring device he or she wishes and will almost certainly determine that one or the other is in fact closer to the cue ball.
2. Incorrect (if I am correctly understanding your answer). This one is a common test question for a referee. The easy way to explain it is thus: following a foul stroke, the colours on spots, last two Reds are on the table and the balls come to rest with the White exactly on the baulk line between Green and Brown, one Red exactly on the baulk line outside the Green, and the other Red exactly on the baulk line between Brown and Yellow. The striker declares Brown as the free ball and simply rolls the White along the baulk line to touch the Brown snookering one Red behind free ball Brown and snookering the other Red behind non-free ball Green.
For this situation, there is actually a "special rule" written (Section 2., Rule 17. (c) if you care to look it up) that states that in such a situation, "...there is no effective snookering ball", but I actually prefer to simply follow the same logic from the above situations, then no "special rule" is really necessary. Think about it...if all of the Reds were to be effectively snookered behind the free ball Brown, it would be a foul stroke. But if any Red anywhere on the table is effectively snookered behind some other non-free ball, then how could it possibly be a foul? It is not. In the same way that you are allowed to nominate a free ball and then use it to lay a snooker behind some other ball, this is what you have essentially done...nominated Brown as free ball and laid a snooker behind the Green.
Sorry for the long post on this one, but of course, when dealing with the Rules of Snooker, precision language is required.