Golf Match Play Rules and Helpful hints

By: Jim O Connell


Match play golf is a different facet of the game that makes golf such a versatile entertainment., and knowing some match play golf tips and how to play by match play golf rules will add one more dimension to the game. Whereas stroke play is essentially the golfer against the course, match play golf rules pits one participant against another, referred to as singles match play, or two individuals against two other players, with foursomes and fourballs as the most common formats with team play.
In order to describe the various match play golf rules, we will utilize the Ryder Cup set-up, although one can find probably as numerous variations played by different groups as the imagination permits. But that's a part of the fun of match play: as long as everyone agrees on the match play golf rules you'll compete under for that round, have fun with it. With singles match play, the player who has the least number of strokes wins that hole, regardless if it's by one stroke or more. Whoever has won more holes after 18 would be the winner for the match, and when tied after 18 the match is considered halved, with each Ryder Cup squad receiving one-half point. In other competition, for example the U.S. Amateur Championship, if the competition is all square (or tied) after 18, they keep on until there's a winner.
With four ball match play golf, every player plays his individual golf ball, and the team that wins is the team that has a participant with the lowest score. A variation can be to add up each team's total scores to determine the winner. Due to the popularity with the Ryder Cup, foursome's match play golf is becoming a well-liked concept, although not as widespread amongst friends playing casual golf. Most likely the reason being most people while playing prefer to play their particular shots, and in this format match play golf rules dictate that people on each side alternate their shots playing the same ball. So player A drives, then player B hits the second shot, player A the third, and so forth playing the identical ball. Handicaps allowances of every golfer may also be figured in if desired.
There are a few match play golf tips that may be useful to not necessarily post the best score, but to achieve your goal of winning the match:
1. If your opponent is in difficulty, play conservatively. If he makes double bogey, a bogey still wins the hole.
2. Another of our golf tips is if you play first, put pressure on your opponent by keeping the golf ball within a playable spot. Never let him off the hook by hitting out of bounds or any other disastrous shot.
3. When putting, if the longer putt is needed to win the hole and the putt of his partner is shorter, the shorter putt should be taken first if it may give his partner the "line", or how the putt will break.
4. The final of our tips is unless not permitted by local ruling, you're allowed to practice putting and chipping after the hole is complete. Use that time for your benefit unless you happen to be being pushed from the group following you.

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For more conversation on golf, I've put together an article on the Rescue Club, a handy tool for those longer shots, as well as Golf Short Game for information on reducing shots around the green. Sean O'Kelly is an avid golfer and writer living in London.

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