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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Joanna James Joanna James
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Learn about the different types of golf competitions

There are many formats of golf tournaments but the two basic forms of playing golf are Stroke Play and Match Play.


Stroke Play

One of the most common forms of competition is stroke play; stroke play means that the total strikes during the rounds are added together to give a cumulative score and anyone who has ever played golf will have recorded their total scores during their round. Each team or player should complete 18 holes and one of the drawbacks is that one hole can destroy your round.


Match play

The match play was the first to be invented according to the United States Gold Association and scoring in this differs from standard tournaments. In match play, each hole contests between two players, each hole is given a plus one to his/her score and the one who wins most holes over the round is the winner. The hole is 'halved' if either teams or players are equal. Discover some of the amazing Johor golf courses to play this unique sport such as The Els Club Malaysia, designed by the legendary Ernie Els.



The team consists of two players play as partners and uses one ball. The partners take turns teeing off on each hole and thereafter play alternately during the play of each hole...Yes, this does need that extra layer of thinking psychology but playing foursome is no more complicated than that. Penalty strokes do not affect the order of play.



In a golf scramble tournament, teams usually consists of two-four players and each member of the team tee off on each hole. Usually, the best shot is the longest and through general consensus of the scramble team, the best tee will be chosen. Until one player hits the ball in the hole members of the team continue selecting the best shot and try to include at least one player who can hit good tee shots if you are selecting the team. Since tournament organizers modify the rules as they wish, rules for playing scramble are informal and are not covered under the official rules of Golf.



Four-ball is the chosen format for some of the biggest golf tournaments such as Presidents Cup, Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup competitions. Four players create two teams consists of two players and each player plays their own ball and the better score of the team counts.

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