When it comes to golf formats, there are more than enough to go around, and choosing which is best for your event can be a daunting task. You’ve got formats such as the shotgun start, staggered tee times, and the scramble.
Today we’ll be taking a deep dive into the scramble format. What is the scramble? And no, we’re not talking about eggs.
What Is The Scramble Golf Format?
The scramble format in golf sounds quite complicated, but, in essence, it’s actually pretty straightforward. A team of four players is formed, and a captain is selected. Once the captain is selected, all four players tee off. The captain then chooses the best ball from the four shots.
The other three players can pick up and clean their golf balls and bring them to the spot the captain has chosen. The four players then play from the same spot, repeating the process. The scramble format continues like this for the full 18 holes, and the best score of each group is tallied up.
Similar to the shotgun format, the scramble format is popular when hosting charity and fundraising events because it helps to relax the rules and the participants along with it. The scramble format does not have an official designation in the USGA or R&A rule book, meaning it cannot be used for tournament play.
The Rules Of The Scramble Golf Format
- Players are permitted to move their ball up to one club length to improve their lie. The only cases in which the one club rule length does not apply is when the ball is either in a water hazard or in the bunker. In these cases, players must play the ball from where it lies, just as they would in regular play.
- As I stated, all four players tee off, and generally, the captain chooses the best ball, but in reality, this never happens. Most groups chat about which ball is the best, and once a consensus is made, play continues from that spot and is repeated until the hole is finished.
- After the captain or team has chosen the ball they are playing, a marker must be placed in the fairway to designate where the team is playing from. Generally speaking, the longest ball off the tee is often chosen, but on occasion, it might be better to choose a ball that is further back but still in the fairway.
The scramble format is a lot of fun and allows golfers of all levels to play together, which makes a nice change from the traditional formats used in preparation for tournament golf. However, although four golf balls are played on every shot, it’s important to note that only one ball counts toward the score for each hole and, subsequently, the 18 holes.
The team that posts the lowest score wins the day, but in the case of a tie, the organizers will draw a random hole for the two teams to continue playing until a winner is determined. A tie is generally accepted if a winning group cannot be determined.
Scramble Golf FAQs
What is scramble golf?
Scramble golf is a format of play where a team of golfers hits their shots from the tee, and then chooses the best shot among them. All team members then hit their next shot from that spot, and the process continues until the ball is holed. It is a popular format for tournaments and corporate outings.
What is a scramble vs best ball golf tournament?
In a scramble tournament, all members of a team hit their shots, choose the best one, and then play from that spot. In a best ball tournament, each player plays their own ball throughout the round, and the team’s score is determined by the lowest score on each hole. The main difference is that in a scramble, the team plays from the same spot after each shot, while in best ball, each player plays their own ball.
What is a 3 person scramble in golf?
A 3 person scramble is a variation of the scramble format played by a team of three golfers. The team members take turns hitting shots and choose the best one to play from. It allows smaller groups to participate in scramble events.
What’s the difference between shamble and scramble?
In a shamble, each player in a team hits their tee shot, and then the team selects the best tee shot among them. From there, each player plays their own ball for the rest of the hole, similar to a stroke play format. In a scramble, the team chooses the best shot after each stroke, and all team members play from that spot until the ball is holed. The key difference is that in a shamble, players play their own balls after the initial tee shot.
What are scramble rules?
Scramble rules can vary depending on the event or organizer, but generally, a scramble involves the following rules:
- All team members tee off.
- The team selects the best tee shot and all members play their second shots from that spot.
- The process continues until the ball is holed, with the team selecting the best shot after each stroke.
- Teams may have restrictions on the number of tee shots required from each member or other variations.
Is scramble fast or slow?
Scramble golf can be faster than regular stroke play since the team selects the best shot and all members play from there. It eliminates the need for each player to complete the entire hole individually. However, the pace of play can still vary depending on the size of the group, the skill level of the players, and other factors.