BASIC MATCH PLAY RULES
All Local Rules and USGA Rules of Golf apply! Know your relief and penaly options.
Scoring: (see example score card)
Each hole is a separate contest that is either won (+1 or “one up”), lost (-1) or tied or “halved” (hole 9). Each player or team keeps their own running scores.
Whenever the cumulative score is tied, the match is said to be “all square.” (AS)
If a player/team is “up” by the number of points equal to the number of holes remaining, the leading player or team is said to be "dormie". (Player A after hole 8). This means that they only need to halve or win the next hole to win the match.
Once player is “up” more holes than there are left, she wins. Example: After 12 holes, there are only 6 left and A has won 7 holes. A is said to have won the match "7 and 6".
Disputes & Claims:
• If a doubt or dispute arises between players, a claim may be made to an authorized representative of the tournament Committee (or RGC Club Pro). But first,the player must notify her opponent (1) that she is making a claim, (2) of the facts of the situation and (3) that she will ask for a ruling.
• If no representative is readily available, the players must continue the match without delay and then lodge a claim before playing from the next tee or, in the case of the last hole of the match, before all players in the match leave the putting green.
• Do not sign the score card until dispute has been settled by the Committee.
Concession of Match, Hole, or Next Stroke
• A player may concede a match or hole at any time before the start or conclusion of that match or hole. The match or hole is not played out.
• A player may concede her opponent’s next stroke at any time, as long as the opponent’s ball is at rest (the opponent is considered to have holed out with that next stroke). Balls are picked up and play advances to next hole.
• A concession must be offered ; it may not be asked for by the opponent (ex.” Do you concede?”) Once given, it may not be declined or withdrawn.
Order of Play
• The side that has the honor on the first tee is decided by a draw (or coint flip or tee toss). Thereafter, the side winning the hole has the honor at the next tee.
• During the round, the ball farthest from the hole is always played first. If both balls are equidistant from the hole, the ball to be played first is decided by lot.
• If a player hits out of turn, her opponent may immediately require her to cancel the stroke just made and, in correct order, play a ball as near as possible from the spot where the original ball was last played.
• If a player begins to play having declared a handicap higher than that to which she is entitled and this affects the number of strokes given or received, she is disqualified.
• *If a player arrives late, ready to play, but within five minutes after her starting time, she loses the first hole. Later than 5 minutes, she is disqualified.
• Hitting from outside the teeing ground (ahead of the line between the tee markers or more than 2 club lengths behind)) - No penalty. Opponent may recall the stroke, but isn't required to do so. It is easy to mistakenly tee up your ball ahead of the line. Be careful- many tees are not lined up 90 degrees to the fairway.
Wrong Ball – loss of hole
• If a player makes a stroke at a wrong ball, she loses the hole.
• If the wrong ball belongs to another player, its owner must place a ball on the spot from which the wrong ball was first played.
• *If the player and opponent exchange balls during the play of a hole, the first to make a stroke at a wrong ball loses the hole; when this cannot be determined, the hole must be played out with the balls exchanged.
Wrong Information - loss of hole
• A player must not give wrong information to her opponent (ex. How many strokes she has taken to get to the green)
Be sure to keep accurate track of your strokes and communicate to your opponent if you incurred any penalty.
Ball at Rest Moved by player or equipment: (same as stroke play)
If your ball at rest is moved
• by you or your equipment, you incur a 1 stroke penalty and you must replace the ball.
• someone else or another ball, replace it without penalty to you. But your opponent incurs a 1 stroke penalty.
Ball in Motion, Deflected or Stopped (same as stroke play)
When a ball in motion is deflected or stopped by
• an opponent or equipment– no penalty, and the player may cancel the stroke or play the ball as it lies. The stroke must be canceled before another stroke is made.
• another ball in motion - No penalty, even if both balls are on the putting green. Balls are played as they lie.
Ball Assisting or Interfering with Play (same as stroke play)
• You may mark and lift your ball if it might assist any other player.*
• Your opponent may request to have you lift your ball* if it might interfere with her shot or assist any other player. Do not volunteer to mark; she must ask you.
*If you are not on the green, be careful in marking and holding your ball. You may NOT clean your ball or you will lose the hole. Tip- Use 2 fingers and hold the ball at a distance from your body.