Match-play freedom is a Cool Golf Thing

Think outside your tee box.
What's right with this picture? There are no tee markers to be found.

Tee markers are overrated. They're only relevant for golfers intent on entering a medal-play score for handicap purposes. Less than 5% of golfers actually keep a handicap (that's fodder for a whole 'nother article), so if you're not punching your score into GHIN at the end of the round, why not play the course you want to play, instead of the one the scorecard wants you to play?

The next time you get together with your best buddy or your regular foursome, add some strategy to the mix. Play whatever tees you want from hole to hole, with the box chosen by the side that last won a hole. Do you and your partner drive it farther than your opponents? Move up a couple boxes on a shortish par 4 to where you and your partner can get to the green and your opponents can't. Feel like stressing your opponents out at a strategic juncture in the match? Move everyone to the tips and turn a medium par 3 into a beast. It will increase the stakes for winning and losing holes just a bit more.

10 Min Read
March 19, 2018
Match play is Tim Gavrich's favorite form of competitive golf, especially on a course that lends itself to the format's unique features. Here's what great match play courses have in common.

There are whole golf clubs devoted to this practice. Ballyneal (above), out in eastern Colorado, doesn't use tee markers for normal play; the H-O-R-S-E approach to match play is the standard. The same goes for the new Gil Hanse-designed Ohoopee Match Club west of Savannah, Georgia. But you don't have to be a member of one of these private enclaves to enjoy this bit of freedom and unpredictability when you play golf. All it takes is a bit of an open mind.

1 Min Read
March 22, 2019
Peek-a-boo!

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for GolfPass. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.
3 Comments
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H-O-R-S-E?

Please enlighten me...

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H-O-R-S-E is a basketball shooting match. First shooter makes a shot, 2nd player must make same shot from same location. Misses provide the letters. First with 5 misses, loses the HORSE match.

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when on the green...continuous putting....put through..no marking after initial mark...must putt .through the hole...no touching the ball after initial putt. No gimmies, makes players temperment come into play...also moves game along...

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Match-play freedom is a Cool Golf Thing