dirty pool

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Probably an allusion to failing to follow the rules when playing billiards. Compare not cricket.


  • (file)


dirty pool (uncountable)

  1. (slang) Foul play, misconduct, underhandedness.
    • 1967, Keith Wheeler and Sandy Smith, "Murf the Surf and his Jewel-studded Jinx," Life, vol. 62, no. 16 (21 Apr.), p. 95:
      The thieves, in their turn, have developed a self-pity syndrome about the FBI, considering government surveillance to be dirty pool — unjustifiable interference with free enterprise.