Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Boules

Observations in the game of Petanque (boules)

I have been playing an observing people play Petanque (Boules).

Many are dissatisfied with my recommendations and comments, and are outright condemning my interference, since they consider themselves Pros without the backing of any performance statistics.

1. Le pointeur devient meilleur tireur que celui qui “se defoue” aux tires forts
2. Ceux qui se “designent” tireurs et qui ne pointent pas ont tendance a faire perdre le match au team
3. Le tireur perd ses boules au debut et se revelle conseiller de “comment pointe'” et Ou pointe”
4. Les tirs forts (macho) peuvent impressioner les debutants, mais ne gagnent pas la partie.

5. Les tirs “doux” on les avantages de faire “carreau” plus frequement  et de conserver sa boule sur le terrain

6. The club that refuses to take statistics performance fails in competitions, invariably

7. Almost all beginners consider themselves volunteered professionals in how to play the game and their proper techniques

You have a choice of a wide rage of suggestions on how to play. Le terrain dicte ta technique pour la trajectoire de la boule (tres haut ou bas cercle). My set of suggestions (Conseils) pour mieux pointer:

  1. Regarde ou tu veut que la boule tombe, selon ta method de trajectoire
  2. Fait attention a la direction de ton poigne’, sinon la boule prend la direction naturelle de ton poigne’
  3. Utilise ton poigne’ et ton coude, jamais l’ epaule
  4. Vous avey 30 secondes pour pointer par regulation: prend ton temps et que l’autre team s’ agite

Conseils pour tirer:

  1. De meme que pour pointer, mais regarde l’ endroit de la boule a tirer, comme au billard
  2. Retirer le bras en quart de cercle a l’ arriere du dos pour donner un leger effect
  3. Les genoux un peu baisses pour plus d’ equilibre et de flexibilite’: Pour eviter d’ utiliser les muscles du dos ou l’ epaule.
  4. Go “Cool”. Ma badha kel hal tentee3

Note: In a previous article, I suggested criteria for Petanque Performance statistics and a few rules and regulations

Measuring Petanque performance? Which club took this important step?

The game of Petanque is like playing horseshoes with additional complexities: We play with metal balls that could be hit and displaced and the target is a tiny light ball called cochonet that can also be hit, displaced with various consequences.

In Lebanon, the game of petanque (boules) is mushrooming in many villages because young and elder people can play it and gather and meet.

The drawback is that this physically relaxing game (though you end up walking a lot) is Not that relaxing emotionally: A few people (mostly the bullies) shoulder the responsibility of selecting subjectively who is a good player, who’s Not and forgetting the potential new arrivals.

Petanque is a relatively easy game that requires plenty of consistent training to conveniently acquire the skills for analyzing the field and controlling your nerves and muscles for punting (pointeur) to the target or hitting the closest enemy ball to target (tireur).

A team in competition is of 3 players, holding 2 balls for a total score of 13 points to win. Otherwise, we can play with 4 members or even 2 people holding each 3 balls. The target cochonet is to be located between 6 to 10 meters.

The subjective selection, usually done by lousy performers, is alienating many players and discarding great potentials, especially when travelling to other villages for competition.

Asking someone to take statistics of each player in each game in order to tabulate performance shouldn’t be such a great burden. A computer software usually manipulate most of the data, provides all kinds of ratios and print the best performers.

I suggest the following criteria for taking statistics:

  1. For punting, coming closer to the cochonet, a distance of less 20 cm is allocated 3 points, less than 30 cm two pts, less than 50 cm a single point
  2. For hitting the ball (tireurs), a carreaux (displacing the other team ball and taking its place) allocate 3 pts, just displacing the ball 2 pts, hitting but not making a significant difference a single point. If the player displace his team’s ball then we deduct 3 points (-3).

It is important to discriminate between performance and consistency in potential skills.

Performance is measuring the scores and selecting the highest scorers for any competition. Potential is just adding the binary numbers of 1 and Zero, like hit or No hit, satisfactory punting or totally lousy.

For example, if you are consistent in hitting regardless of type of hits, or satisfactory punting like within 50 cm, then this consistency can be promising with additional training.

The metallic ball can be of various weights (680 to 730 grams), of slightly different diameters and of various alloys.

I conjecture that the ball is a minor factor, but the types of field is the main variable. 

If you are not flexible and do Not exercise on different throwing methods, in holding the ball, the trajectory of the ball (high or rolling on the ground…), and flexing of the wrist… you will be at a disadvantage.

I find that the wrist is an important factor: if you are Not conscious of the direction and position of your wrist before throwing, the ball will travel according to the normal direction of your wrist.

Also, take all your time to aim and throw: you have 10 seconds to throw. At least, you will enjoy throwing the ball and play on the nerves of the opposing team members.

Beware of those who volunteer to give you advice on their particular methods of throwing the ball: Just keep experimenting with what is best for you.

Lately, many players would like to impress on you that a certain throwing method is the rule (regulation), but I didn’t find any rule, pictures, graphs or anything of the sort of how you hold the ball and throw. (Usually, those who mention “rules” at leisure are lousy performers)

Note: I realized that balls made in China are practically discarded as Not fitting regulation? Why? I think it is a French political and economic colonial constraint for players.


Tentative set of regulations for game clubs

I posted in a previous article a description of the game Petanque or bachi since it is this game I do have in mind.

The regulations are to be discussed by the members who don’t miss a game and show up on time

1)  First come players, first served. It is inconceivable and unfair that any member barges in and considers he is endowed with the privilege Not to wait his turn to replace the losing team,

2) There should be No veto power, implicit or explicit, Not to play with any member who showed up on time.

3) If a team must have a leader, for obscure reasons pertaining to a few idiosyncrasies, the leader must be selected from those who don’t miss a game and show up on time. The rationale is that: 1) they practised more than the other occasional players, 2) They had plenty of opportunities to observe the other players and know better their limitations and capabilities, and 3) they are dedicated to keeping the team alive and kicking.

4) Players should come when Not hungry or feeling jittery from a bad day. Quitting should be penalized because it destroy the loyalty to the team. Each member of the team must focus and play the best he can. Otherwise, the game suffer and the cohesion is weakened.

5) When it is Not his turn to play, a team must Not interfere with the decisions of the other team. Any playing member has the right to inspect the field for an entire minutes and the player has 30 seconds to play his balls.

6) Any member of the playing teams has the full right to measure the distances of the balls to the cochonet and no one must disagree with that right simply on visual evaluation.

7) A measuring instrument with two movable cursors is more appropriate that any other measuring gismo that relies on visual evaluation.

8) It is desirable that each team be the same in order to function properly during competitions. If the team is Not complete, then selection from the first comers is highly recommended.


After 3 months of regularly playing Petanque and being on time, I discovered that irregularities in behaviors of the members have taken a toll on me. It was no longer fun and pleasant to pass quality time with the new acquaintances I linked up friendship with.

We enjoyed wonderful evenings accompanied with plenty of quality laughter, the kinds of involuntary loud laughter.

It was a wonderful journey that permitted me to learn and socialize and discover my humoristic tendencies and joking mind.





June 2023

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