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Interesting golf tournament idea

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I played in a charity tournament last weekend.  The format was four-person team best ball: Each player plays their own ball all the way to the hole, and the combined 2 best scores on each hole count as the team score. They threw in an added twist that I'd never heard of before which turned out to be quite fun: Each team was given a special ball (they were of various bright colors to help distinguish them, but were basically cheap regulation balls), and each person on the team had to take turns playing that ball as their ball for the entire hole. If your team still had that ball at the end of the round, it got put in a drawing for $200 cash.

 

[Note: This tournament wasn't played under the official rules of golf in that 1) I don't think there's any such thing as a four-person/two-best-balls format, 2) I don't think you can implement a local rule requiring a particular ball to be rotated among the competitors, and 3) Mulligans were for sale. (This tournament has been a scramble in previous years, so it's still pretty loosey goosey). That said though, the tournament director did ask that we all play by the official rules, including no more than 5 minutes spent looking for the colored ball.]

 

I figured there was no chance of us not losing it, since the course was bordered by a lot of ball-eating forests, 2 of us on the team were sprayers (me and my brother-in-law), and one (my father-in-law) was a short hitter with no chance of clearing some of the hazards in front of some of the tees we were playing from. But somehow, despite several close calls that included finding the ball on the last hole with seconds to spare in the allotted time, we still had it at the end. 4 out of the 10 teams lost theirs.

 

We didn't win the $200, but I thought it was a cool idea, as it brought some interesting strategy into play. First, you needed to decide what the order of playing the ball would be because you want to try to get the ball to the weaker players on the par 3's or holes with the least trouble, and you don't want the short hitters to have the ball when they have to carry a hazard.  Then, if you were the one with the colored ball on a particular hole, you had to weigh how aggressive to be depending on how much you brought the risk of losing the ball into play vs. whether you might be required to provide one of the two best scores on that hole, which depended on how everyone else was lying.

 

Other considerations, resulting from still trying to play by the rules, came in to play as well: At one point my FIL hit his tee shot with the colored ball into a deep ravine with tall grass. After he hit his provisional safely across, I suggested he go up and hit that one before looking for his first, since he wouldn't have been able to get a club on his first even if he found it, so if he did find he's have to go back to the tee with it and risk hitting into the junk again. By hitting his provisional from a spot past where his first was likely to be, it becomes the ball in play and we can go back and look for the first without having to play it if we find it.

 

Anyway, just thought I'd describe this twist as I thought it was novel and fun.

 

And btw, my wife won $50 for longest women's drive. :-D 

post #2 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by sacm3bill View Post
 

 

 

[Note: This tournament wasn't played under the official rules of golf in that 1) I don't think there's any such thing as a four-person/two-best-balls format, 

 

And btw, my wife won $50 for longest women's drive. :-D 

Congrats to the Mrs and glad you had a fun time.

 

I don't think playing 2 low out of 4 violates any ROG, but I guess I could be wrong.

post #3 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree View Post
 

I don't think playing 2 low out of 4 violates any ROG, but I guess I could be wrong.

 

It doesn't. It's just stroke play with the best two scores counting.

 

The mulligans, on the other hand… :)

 

Sounds like you had fun, which is what matters.

post #4 of 12

Sounds like a fun idea. It would add some pressure not wanting to be the one that loses the ball for the team.

 

On our course getting through the 9th and 18th holes without getting wet is always a challenge.

 

We play that format every Saturday (except when we occasionally use 3 balls per team).

 

Funny thing is that usually around 5 under per side has a good chance to win, so that's what we are used to shooting for. One time we used all four balls and the team I was on came in at 9 over for the front and 10 over for the back. We thought there was absolutely no chance to win and were shocked when we won both sides. It never occurred to us how many strokes it would add by also using the bottom 2 scores.

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post
 

Sounds like a fun idea. It would add some pressure not wanting to be the one that loses the ball for the team.

 

Totally.

 

I also expected that having so much importance on finding a lost ball would tend to bog the pace down, but it wasn't any slower than I'm used to for these types of tournaments.

post #6 of 12
I was involved in the planning of a tournament for my son's lax team. Not wanting to do the typical scramble and to try to draw serious golfers to play at Mayacoo Lakes (home of Johnson Wagner) we went with a variation called a shamble. Everyone plays their own ball in from the group's best drive with the 2 low scores being counted. It was a great tournament and a break from the drudgery of the typical charity scramble.

It seems like your tournament changed it up. It sounds like it was a good time. We did the shamble angle to speed up the play but allow for the experience of playing an exclusive course come out.
post #7 of 12
A neighbor of mine runs a Fathers Day outing every year for family and friends where they use the "bonus ball" idea. Have to admit it is fun and gave us reason to strategize often when the "less consistent" players (which was me one or two of the years) is playing the ball. Wonder if the feeling a tour player gets holding a tight lead in the last few holes is the same as a hacker having to carry a late round tee shot with the bonus ball over water...

Also just played in my first ever shamble a month or so ago. That was a nice twist to the regular scramble format.
post #8 of 12

Fun idea - adds that extra bit of challenge or strategy to the game.  I can remember playing a tournament a while back where we had a special ball, and it may have been the same format, but my memory is a bit foggy on it.  I know that it didn't result in anything special for us or it would have stuck in my mind.

post #9 of 12
Special or colored ball format is a fun game and adds a certain camaraderie among your group - everyone chips in when looking for the ball if it ends up in woods, deep rough, etc. Our groups ball ended up in a pond, one of the guys trotted in and fetched it out. It was a cold day in the mid 50's. More than a bet it's all about bragging rights! Brrrrr
post #10 of 12

I played in benefit tournament earlier this summer with the same rules. Each team got a pink ball that had to be played in rotation. Two of the guys on my team played golf maybe once a year, so I knew we were probably going to lose it quickly. I birdied the first hole with it and then it was lost on hole 3, haha. Fun concept though definitely.

post #11 of 12

Years ago on our buddy trip, we did that with a Pink Lady, but we passed it around, if you finished the hole with it, you got to decide who got it next.  Added a little excitement to the round and gave us some ammo to tease with.

post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by sacm3bill View Post
 

I played in a charity tournament last weekend.  The format was four-person team best ball: Each player plays their own ball all the way to the hole, and the combined 2 best scores on each hole count as the team score. They threw in an added twist that I'd never heard of before which turned out to be quite fun: Each team was given a special ball (they were of various bright colors to help distinguish them, but were basically cheap regulation balls), and each person on the team had to take turns playing that ball as their ball for the entire hole. If your team still had that ball at the end of the round, it got put in a drawing for $200 cash.

 

[Note: This tournament wasn't played under the official rules of golf in that 1) I don't think there's any such thing as a four-person/two-best-balls format, 2) I don't think you can implement a local rule requiring a particular ball to be rotated among the competitors, and 3) Mulligans were for sale. (This tournament has been a scramble in previous years, so it's still pretty loosey goosey). That said though, the tournament director did ask that we all play by the official rules, including no more than 5 minutes spent looking for the colored ball.]

 

I figured there was no chance of us not losing it, since the course was bordered by a lot of ball-eating forests, 2 of us on the team were sprayers (me and my brother-in-law), and one (my father-in-law) was a short hitter with no chance of clearing some of the hazards in front of some of the tees we were playing from. But somehow, despite several close calls that included finding the ball on the last hole with seconds to spare in the allotted time, we still had it at the end. 4 out of the 10 teams lost theirs.

 

We didn't win the $200, but I thought it was a cool idea, as it brought some interesting strategy into play. First, you needed to decide what the order of playing the ball would be because you want to try to get the ball to the weaker players on the par 3's or holes with the least trouble, and you don't want the short hitters to have the ball when they have to carry a hazard.  Then, if you were the one with the colored ball on a particular hole, you had to weigh how aggressive to be depending on how much you brought the risk of losing the ball into play vs. whether you might be required to provide one of the two best scores on that hole, which depended on how everyone else was lying.

 

Other considerations, resulting from still trying to play by the rules, came in to play as well: At one point my FIL hit his tee shot with the colored ball into a deep ravine with tall grass. After he hit his provisional safely across, I suggested he go up and hit that one before looking for his first, since he wouldn't have been able to get a club on his first even if he found it, so if he did find he's have to go back to the tee with it and risk hitting into the junk again. By hitting his provisional from a spot past where his first was likely to be, it becomes the ball in play and we can go back and look for the first without having to play it if we find it.

 

Anyway, just thought I'd describe this twist as I thought it was novel and fun.

 

And btw, my wife won $50 for longest women's drive. :-D

 

 

We've been doing that for years in our one day member-guest tournaments. The Yellow Ball competition. Lots of fun. I remember one year we started on a par 3 (shotgun start) and, after figuring out how the rotation would work on the course, we decided that I would start with the yellow ball. I hit it into a bunker fronting the green, it plugged under the lip of the bunker, and we never found it. Lost the ball on the first swing.:doh:

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