|SMGC Tournament Formats|
This page will define the different formats for tournament the Sunnyvale Men's Golf Club holds. More formats will be added here as they become used. Various tournaments may choose to impose slight variations to these formats, are offer alternate formats. The formats covered here are:
2-Man Low-Net Better Ball
4-Man Cha Cha Cha
This is a basic 18-hole stroke play competition where a player's course handicap is subtracted from his gross score at the end of the round.
For example, if a player has a course handicap of 12 and shoots 86, his final low-net score will be 86 - 12 = 74.
Sometimes we play a 36-hole stroke play competition where the cumulative score for both 18-holes are totaled together. These usually occur over two days.
Match Play is a fun format that is not played too often in SMGC tournament events. In Match Play, you play hole by hole against an opponent, and whoever wins the most holes over 18 holes (or sometimes 36 holes) wins the match.
In this format, how many above or below par is meaningless. The important thing is whether you take less, more, or the same number of strokes as your opponent does for each individual hole.
Match Play can be done with or without handicaps, and can also be head-to-head (one person versus one other person) or with two-man teams (better ball of each team is used).
This is a popular format used for SMGC tournaments. This is called Stableford in some older clubs. You earn points for each hole depending on what your net score is on that hole.
You get strokes on all the holes rated at your course handicap or lower. For example, if you have a course handicap of 12, you will get one stroke for the twelve holes whose handicap rating is 1 through 12.
If you have a course handicap greater than 18, you will receive two (or more) strokes on the appropriate holes. For example, if your course handicap is 20, you will receive two strokes on the holes rated 1 and 2 and one stroke on all the other holes.
Your official tournament scorecard will indicate which holes you have strokes on.
The number of Point Par points you get for each hole is as follows:
|Net Double Eagle||+5|
|Net Double Bogey||0|
|Net Triple Bogey|
For example, if a player has one stroke on a par-4 hole and he shoots a gross 5 on that hole, he gets a net 4 on that hole (5 - 1 stroke) which gives him a net par. He therefore gets +2 points for that hole.
The total of all the points for each hole is the Point Par round total for each player. Typically, a round that ends in a net even par will yield 36 points in the Point Par system.
Why do we have Point Par? For a given tournament, we often choose between Low Net and Point Par. On a difficult course, a Low Net competition might force some competitors to finish off a hole where they may have already taken a high number or lost a ball and may not want to take the time to go back to the original spot and hit again. A Point Par competition essentially is the same as a Low Net except that if you are already taking a net triple bogey on a hole, you have the option of just picking up your ball and moving on to the next hole without being disqualified from the tournament as you would be in Low Net. So, in these cases, Point Par speeds up play, which is always a good thing.
Refer to the Point Par section for a description of how a point system works.
Modified Stableford works the same was as Point Par except that the point values are different. They are as follows:
|Net Double Eagle||+8|
|Net Double Bogey|
Modified Stableford is a format that encourages risk versus reward decisions. Basically, you get more points bouncing between net bogeys and net birdies than you do just getting net pars. Plus, you still get to pick up if you get a net double bogey or worse, so this helps pace of play!
This is a new format introduced to the club by Arif Janjua in 2002. This is essentially playing match play against net par. You get strokes on each hole just like in Point Par and Modified Stableford. The point structure for v.Par is very simple:
|Net Double Bogey|
So, anything better than net par is worth +1, anything worse is worth -1, and net par itself is worth 0. This will make you think about how to play every hole, sometimes very conservatively and sometimes very aggressively. Eagles are worth the same as birdies. Conversely, quadruple bogeys are worth the same as bogeys!
Most of our two-man competitions are low-net better-ball competitions or variations of it. This is a team event with two players per team. Each player gets strokes on the holes based on his course handicap (as described in the Point Par section above). At the end of each hole, the lower net score of each player is the low-net better ball score for that team. The total of all eighteen low-net better ball scores is the team's total for the round.
For example, Players A and B are partners. On the fifth hole, which is a par 4, Player A gets a stroke and Player B does not. Player A shoots a gross 5 and Player B shoots a gross 5 as well. The net scores are a 4 for A and a 5 for B. Therefore, the low-net better ball score for the team is 4 for the fifth hole.
There are several variations of this that are sometimes used, depending on the competition. NCGA two-man competitions often impose these types of limitations so it helps to become familiar with them.
A maximum handicap index per player can be imposed. This can occur for regular low-net competitions as well. This is usually reserved for specific NCGA competitions.
A maximum handicap difference between the two players can be imposed. For example, a maximum handicap index difference of 9 may be allowed. This means if one player is a 4.1 and the other is a 15.2, then the second player would have to play to a 13.1 for that tournament.
A percentage of handicap can be enforced. This percentage is usually 80% or 90%. For example, if a 90% rule is in effect, then Player A at 4.1 and Player B at 15.2 would have to play at 3.7 and 13.7 respectively.
This is another type of two-man competition, but both players' balls are counted for each hole. Talk about pressure for each player! This format could be aggregate low-net, aggregate point-par, or even aggregate modified stableford -- all having the expected meanings where each player's score for each hole is added to his partner's. Like in 2-man Better Ball, there may be handicap restrictions for the team.
Hit your drive. In a two-person scramble, each person hits from the tee. The team then chooses the best of the two drives, and then picks up the other ball and takes it out of play. The players move to the position of the better drive for the team's next shot.
Continue using the same format for each shot. Both players hit their second shots from the spot of the selected drive. The team chooses the best second shot, and then both players hit their third strokes from the position of the preferred second shot.
Putt using the same team format. When your ball and/or your teammate's ball is on the green, pick the ball closest to the pin -- or the ball in the easiest putting position. Both players will putt from that position. Continue until one team member sinks the putt. The hole is over after one of the balls is in the hole, so you must mark your ball and allow your partner to putt.
We usually do a scramble competition once a year. Click here to read all the detailed rules for this popular format.
Every year we have our Member-Guest event in the summer. This popular event is where we run our triad tournament where a member and his guest play three different two-man formats in a single 18-hole round. Click here to read all the detailed rules for this unique format.
In the 4-Man Cha Cha Cha, each member of the team plays his ball throughout. But a 3-hole rotation exists for determining how many net scores are used to create the team score. On the first hole (cha), the one low net ball counts as the team score. On the second hole (cha cha), the two low net balls count as the team score. On the third hole (cha cha cha), the three low net balls count as the team score. The rotation starts over on the fourth hole.
At SMGC tournaments, we may choose to mix up which holes serve as the cha, cha cha, and cha cha cha. This format allows the team to be aggressive on some holes (cha's) but conservative on others (cha cha cha's). Another nice thing about the Cha Cha Cha format is that each person plays his own ball from start to end, and therefore we will be posting each person's score.
Sunnyvale Men's Club does not hold an official skins competition as part of the normal tournament format. However, there is usually an optional skins competition at each tournament that players can choose to participate in. Click here to read more about the Skins Competition.
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Last Updated: December 5, 2015