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80% of handicap in match play

39 posts in this topic

Our pro staff uses 80% of a players handicap in tournaments.  The USGA says it should be 100%.  Our pros feel it levels the playing field by reducing the "sandbag" effect of inflated handicaps.  I can't see how this works to harm the sandbaggers over those of us playing honestly.  Discuss!

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Our pro staff uses 80% of a players handicap in tournaments.  The USGA says it should be 100%.  Our pros feel it levels the playing field by reducing the "sandbag" effect of inflated handicaps.  I can't see how this works to harm the sandbaggers over those of us playing honestly.  Discuss!


This sounds like Bowling............LOL

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80% seems to work best in match play(which most clubs do) while I would gather 100% would be more fair in stroke play.

The reason for match play is that losing a hole has a value of "1" no matter what your score on the hole, while in stroke play if the higher handicap has a blow up hole it could mean 2,3,4,5,,,,,,ect!

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80% seems to work best in match play(which most clubs do) while I would gather 100% would be more fair in stroke play. The reason for match play is that losing a hole has a value of "1" no matter what your score on the hole, while in stroke play if the higher handicap has a blow up hole it could mean 2,3,4,5,,,,,,ect !

Exactly. A high handicap player will have an enormous advantage against a low handicap player if they receive their full handicap in match play. Most match play net events will assign a percentage of handicap.....somewhere between 70% and 80% is normal.

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Most match play net events will assign a percentage of handicap.....somewhere between 70% and 80% is normal.

My experience as well

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I don't remember ever giving strokes in match play, but then again.....I was always on the tail end of the championship flight when I played in these club events.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Parker0065

80% seems to work best in match play(which most clubs do) while I would gather 100% would be more fair in stroke play.

The reason for match play is that losing a hole has a value of "1" no matter what your score on the hole, while in stroke play if the higher handicap has a blow up hole it could mean 2,3,4,5,,,,,,ect!

Exactly. A high handicap player will have an enormous advantage against a low handicap player if they receive their full handicap in match play.

Most match play net events will assign a percentage of handicap.....somewhere between 70% and 80% is normal.

Actually the manual only recommends using such percentages in mixed teams or in fourball (two vs. two) matches.  In a singles match, it should be 100% of course handicap unless the difference is more than 8 strokes, then wheel off the low handicap (lowest handicap plays scratch and his opponent gets the difference between the two handicaps (8 against 14 would play as scratch against 6).

That said, most clubs will use some percentage of the stroke allowance.  Most such adjustments are only to allow for the increased chance for variability in a higher handicap.  When handicaps are within 5 or 6 strokes, 100% works just fine.  The manual recommends using 90% when the difference is more than 8 strokes.   I've played partner (fourball) handicap matches with 80%, and that's okay, but 70% is over the top - that's just screwing the high handicapper.

Using such allowance adjustments to combat sandbagging is both stupid and useless.   The best way to combat sandbagging is to have review and maintenance by an active handicap committee.  The handicap system is not, and can't possibly be, designed to combat cheating.  That is the job of the competition or club handicap chairman.  If you can't manage that for one reason or another, then use only tournament scores for competition handicaps.

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According to Dean Knuth, one of the developers of the USGA's handicap system:

"Although handicaps are supposed to equalize matches, it's not always true, is it?  Unfortunately not. The scale is tipped in favor of the better player .  The way the formula works, for every six strokes difference in handicap, the better player has a one-stroke advantage, because the lower handicapper is more likely to play at or near his handicap than the high handicapper. In a match between an eight handicapper and a 14 handicapper, the better player is giving away six strokes, yet the odds are still 60-40 that he will win the match."

http://www.popeofslope.com/guidelines/handicap103.html

Using 80% of player's handicaps in a one-on-one match will further tip the scales in favor of the lower handicapped player.  If that is the goal, then reducing the handicaps makes sense.

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According to Dean Knuth, one of the developers of the USGA's handicap system:

"Although handicaps are supposed to equalize matches, it's not always true, is it?  Unfortunately not. The scale is tipped in favor of the better player.  The way the formula works, for every six strokes difference in handicap, the better player has a one-stroke advantage, because the lower handicapper is more likely to play at or near his handicap than the high handicapper. In a match between an eight handicapper and a 14 handicapper, the better player is giving away six strokes, yet the odds are still 60-40 that he will win the match."

http://www.popeofslope.com/guidelines/handicap103.html

Using 80% of player's handicaps in a one-on-one match will further tip the scales in favor of the lower handicapped player.  If that is the goal, then reducing the handicaps makes sense.

As a higher (18) HCP I will only play matches with golfers that are + or - a few strokes of my own handicap.  The better the golfer the more consistent the golfer will be and will likely play closer  to his handicap than I will.  The USGA handicap system places a fair amount of emphasis on potential, and let's remember it is the 10 best of the last 20 scores that are used.  My 10 best scores will consist of some low-mid 90's and perhaps a score or two in the high 80's.  As a less consistent golfer I will probably have several scores in my last 20 that are high 90's, and perhaps 1 over 100.  I suspect that my "average" (which the handicap is not) is quite a few strokes higher than the strokes that a low handicapper would have to give me.  So although my potential to compete with a lower handicap may be accurately reflected by my handicap, the probability of it happening are against me.  I have played scratch golfers that gave me a stroke/hole in match play and have been crushed the few times I tried it.

And if you never want to play a match with a much lower handicap again, win a match against him where you received 100% of your strokes!

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Parker0065

80% seems to work best in match play(which most clubs do) while I would gather 100% would be more fair in stroke play.

The reason for match play is that losing a hole has a value of "1" no matter what your score on the hole, while in stroke play if the higher handicap has a blow up hole it could mean 2,3,4,5,,,,,,ect!

Exactly. A high handicap player will have an enormous advantage against a low handicap player if they receive their full handicap in match play.

Most match play net events will assign a percentage of handicap.....somewhere between 70% and 80% is normal.


This is music to my ears.   I have entered a 100% handicap, match play knockout tournament.   If you are right, I have a chance to climb up the bracket.   Any word of advise to play against mid-cap, or low-cap player?   E.g, against low-capper, should I try to play safe on harder holes and "go for par" on easy holes?

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This is music to my ears.   I have entered a 100% handicap, match play knockout tournament.   If you are right, I have a chance to climb up the bracket.   Any word of advise to play against mid-cap, or low-cap player?   E.g, against low-capper, should I try to play safe on harder holes and "go for par" on easy holes?

Play every hole as a personal par of bogey. You'll win a lot of holes with bogey and will only lose to birdies. Make him make pars to tie you and you'll wear him down.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by rkim291968

This is music to my ears.   I have entered a 100% handicap, match play knockout tournament.   If you are right, I have a chance to climb up the bracket.   Any word of advise to play against mid-cap, or low-cap player?   E.g, against low-capper, should I try to play safe on harder holes and "go for par" on easy holes?

Play every hole as a personal par of bogey. You'll win a lot of holes with bogey and will only lose to birdies. Make him make pars to tie you and you'll wear him down.

Good advice, but easier said than done for a 21 handicapper.  Playing "safe" golf usually ends up biting one in the posterior.  Play your game, and make good decisions based on the situation to give yourself the best chance.

Nerves seem to be the bogey plus golfer's worst enemy.  You have a chip to get up and down to win the hole, or up and 2 putt for a tie, and you skull the chip across the green, take 3 more and lose the hole.  I can't tell how many times I've seen scenes similar to this when the nerves start to get to a player.  Combating it is a different process for different people, and you just have to get out and do it to see what works for you.

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Good advice, but easier said than done for a 21 handicapper.  Playing "safe" golf usually ends up biting one in the posterior.  Play your game, and make good decisions based on the situation to give yourself the best chance.   Nerves seem to be the bogey plus golfer's worst enemy.  You have a chip to get up and down to win the hole, or up and 2 putt for a tie, and you skull the chip across the green, take 3 more and lose the hole.  I can't tell how many times I've seen scenes similar to this when the nerves start to get to a player.  Combating it is a different process for different people, and you just have to get out and do it to see what works for you.

God, but I LOVE match play! :-)

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Fourputt

Good advice, but easier said than done for a 21 handicapper.  Playing "safe" golf usually ends up biting one in the posterior.  Play your game, and make good decisions based on the situation to give yourself the best chance.

Nerves seem to be the bogey plus golfer's worst enemy.  You have a chip to get up and down to win the hole, or up and 2 putt for a tie, and you skull the chip across the green, take 3 more and lose the hole.  I can't tell how many times I've seen scenes similar to this when the nerves start to get to a player.  Combating it is a different process for different people, and you just have to get out and do it to see what works for you.

God, but I LOVE match play!

I'm right there with you.  It's so much different from the same old boring stroke play.  Mano y mano and let the dead lie where they fall. :beer:

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I'm right there with you.  It's so much different from the same old boring stroke play.  Mano y mano and let the dead lie where they fall.

I think when/if I start doing competitions this would be a much better format to play than stroke play. It's much more likely to have a chance at winning since a blow up hole won't have as big an impact in the over all results typically.

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Many clubs flight Match Play and all players are equal with no strokes given.

I also recall reading on the USGA site that strokes are given to players to equal a hole and not for a win.

Match Play against equal Hdcp players is the best game in golf.

Club Rat

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Many clubs flight Match Play and all players are equal with no strokes given.

I also recall reading on the USGA site that strokes are given to players to equal a hole and not for a win.

Match Play against equal Hdcp players is the best game in golf.

Club Rat

My club only flighted stroke play tournaments (we played scratch within flight except for the last flight, which had too large a spread of handicaps - typically from about 21-36).  All 5 of our match play bracket tournaments were handicap.

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I also recall reading on the USGA site that strokes are given to players to equal a hole and not for a win.

I am not sure how to interpret this comment.  You are correct that the method of allocating strokes is intended to give strokes to the higher handicapped player on the holes where he/she most likely will need a stroke(s) in order to play even with the lower handicapped player.

Once the strokes are allocated, if both players record a gross "4" on a hole where the higher handicapped player receives a stroke, he/she will win the hole with a net "3".

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