pull vs hook (in cricket, golf, baseball)


Senior Member
According to the dictionary:
Hook: a way of hitting the ball so that it curves sideways instead of going straight ahead
Pull: a way of hitting the ball in cricket, golf, or baseball so that it does not go straight, but moves to one side
Would it be correct to say that they are synonyms? :confused:
  • JamesM

    Senior Member
    A hook has a tighter arc than a pull, as I see it. If you hook a ball it heads off in a pronounced sideways direction. If you pull a ball it gently curves to one side or another.


    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Pretty much. I interpret both as meaning that the ball curves to the left insted of straight ahead (for a right-handed player, to the right for a lefty).

    Edit: I don't have the distinction James has for the exact shape but understand what he means:D

    The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    In baseball "pull" has a very specific meaning that has nothing per se to do with "curving." If a right-handed batter pulls the ball when he hits it, it goes to the left of second base.


    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Agreed. Many pulls do curve but the main sense is just going to the left of straight ahead. A hook, however, as James says, usually has a pronounced curve to it, typically increasing the further the ball goes.


    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    In golf (and only golf) "hook" and "slice" have specific directions, as do "pull" and "push", which are slightly different. Here is an excerpt from golf.about.com:

    "Pull" describes a trajectory or ball flight in which the golf ball starts to the left (for a right-handed golfer) of the target line and continues traveling left in a straight line, ending up well left of the target. A pull is distinguished from a hook by the fact that a hook curves to the left (for a righthander), while a pull flies on a straight path to the left."

    A "pull" going to the right instead of left is a "push". A "hook" going right instead of left is a "slice".

    Again these definitions are only for golf.


    Senior Member
    British English
    A hook in cricket does not impart a curved flight on the ball. Neither does a pull. They are two different ways of striking the ball and refer to the relative positions of ball, bat and batsman, and the trajectory of the bat, at the moment the ball is hit.


    Senior Member
    B.E. via Australian English
    Problem is each of them can have different meanings in different sports. In golf, a pull is when (for a right-handed player) the ball goes to the left of the target, but without veering much off its course. When the ball swings in the air to the left, regardless of its original line, it's a hook. Of course, a duck hook or snap hook is when it hooks left almost off the club face. Tell me about it.

    In cricket, a hook and a pull are essentially the same shot; the pull playing the ball from around waist height, a hook from around shoulder height.
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