Sick of Stableford?

Golf games to put the spice back into your golf tours

Are you tired of playing stableford all the time? You might have to do it back at your club every weekend (and that is another story) but why are you also playing it whilst on a tour with your friends? These games I suggest here will put the spice back into your golf without the needless “playing to your handicap” hanging over you whilst you supposed to be on a fun golf holiday!

A group of golfers enjoying their day at Narooma Golf Club

Games for up to 4 players

Bingo, Bongo , Bango– a great  game that we use on our golf and gourmet days “Gift of Golf” and “The Ultimate ACT“. It starts off really after the the tee shot where 1 point is given for the first player to hit the green, 1 point is given to the closest to the pin from off the green  and 1 point given for the first player to putt out. Needless to say this is not a game of ready golf.  The old fashion idea of  “furthest away has the honour” applies and you mark even for brush-in putts.It is a fun inclusive game where all standards can be catered for and you can work out a strategy to win even if you are the worst player in the group.

Wolf-this is a game where all four players hit off the tee and it is taken in turns where one player is the wolf. They can choose to play after the tee off with another player and try and beat the other players individual net score for that hole. Or they can choose to be the “lone wolf” and try and beat everyone. If the wolf and their partner for the hole win they each get two points, they lose the others get three points each. If the lone wolf beats everyone on a hole, they get 4 points, if they lose everyone else gets 2 points each. A game sure to create a bit of feeling and fun.

4BBB Matchplay– in days gone past, most club competitions used to be four ball/best ball.  It has now largely disappeared which is a shame. But on a golf tour you can go the full Ryder Cup and go matchplay. Pick a partner and go up against the other guys with the best net score for each hole.  Could be stroke, stableford or par. Keep a match score of which pair wins the hole or if it is halved (same net score) Get the fist pumping going!

Golf games for more than four players

Murphy -a different scoring system to Stableford which you could implement over a number of groups based on their net score. It goes like this:

  • -1 for bogey or worse
  • 0 for par
  • +2 for birdie
  • +5 for eagle
  • +8 for hole in one (as if!)

The hole scoring is weighted a bit more on the positive side than stableford and certainly than playing par.

Mulligans-if you don’t know what a Mulligan is, it is where a player elects to hit another shot after an errant shot and calls that the shot in play. Donald Trump was famous for it as well as other misdemeanors  on the golf course.  Why not formalise it for a fun competition round and give everyone mulligans according to their handicap. If you off six, you get six mulligans, if you are off twenty, you get twenty mulligans for the round. You can do any form of scoring you want to get a net score. You can’t call two mulligans in a row and this is probably a game for when the golf course is quieter than usual.

Bisque-Players can nominate before they tee off on each hole if they want to use their handicap strokes on that hole. If you want, you could make it after they complete the hole but not before they hit off on the next one. They can also take as many handicap strokes as they want on a hole as long as the total they have used so far on the round does not exceed their handicap. This means you could ease the burden of what is normally an easy hole but is playing into a gale on that day. Also who ever agrees with the handicap system of holes on a golf course anyway?

Mixed Format 6 holes of each format over 18 holes. Could be done as a match play in pairs or as a cumulative score to go towards an overall competition. The formats are:
  • Scramble -each team (two or a four) picks the best shot hit by a team member and the team hits from where that ball lay and then determines who has hit the best shot until they hole out.
  • Shambles-each team tees off and determines who has hit the best ball. They all hit from where that ball lay but continue to hit their own ball and where it finishes for the rest of the hole. The scoring could be best score in the team, two or three low balls aggregate, the lowest and highest score aggregate or don’t count the highest and lowest and just count the middle scores.
  • Total Net Score- All four or two players play as normal but add their net scores together at the end of each hole for a team score.
golf score

We hope these formats give you some fresh ideas. But if you have some others please leave them on this suggestion page.

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