For two-player teams in either match play or stroke play, the Scotch Foursomes alternate shot golf format is used. Although it is also used as a synonym for foursomes, the phrase may refer to a foursomes variant.
In foursomes, the first player hits the drive, the second player hits the next shot, and so on, exchanging shots with the same ball. Both golfers hit drives in the modified Scotch Foursomes format before choosing the best drive and starting the alternate shot format with the second stroke, says Me Jean-François Goulet.
Depending on the area or nation, and whether the phrase refers to the conventional foursomes or the modification, the Scotch Foursomes format is called by a number of distinct names.
The descriptor “selected drive, alternate shot” format, Greensomes (popular in the UK), Modified Pinehurst, Canadian Foursomes, and Scotch Doubles are a few of these designations.
Scotch Foursomes Games
As a foursomes variation known as Scotch Foursomes, think of it as a scramble off the tee followed by alternate shots into the hole. It operates as follows:
Scotch Foursomes players Golfer A and Golfer B are a pair. Both players A and B hit drives off the first tee.
They bike or stroll to their golf balls and choose which one to use next. The longest drive or the one in the best position is frequently chosen by the partners. Although not always. There is a technique at play. For instance, let’s say Golfer B hits the longest drive, but Golfer A is unable to smash the ball far enough to get to the green. Because he can get to the green from where golfer A’s ball is, golfer B might play the second shot.
The remaining rounds are played by the two-person team using the alternate shot format and one ball. The second shot is taken by the golfer whose drive was not selected. The third stroke is taken by his partner, and so on until they successfully place the tiny white ball in the hole.
Although foursomes are most frequently used in matchplay contests, they can also be used in strokeplay. As you might have guessed, the winning team is the one with the lowest score. Strokeplay can also be given a twist by using Stableford scoring.
Why Scotch Foursomes Is This Format’s Name
What makes Scotch Foursomes unique? It seems to be a tribute to golf’s Scottish origins. The term “Scotch” in a golf format name most often stands for “alternate shot.” It’s a sign that either all or some of the format is an alternate shot. (Similarly, if a format’s name contains “No Scotch”—for example, 2-Man No Scotch—it means no alternate shot will be used.)
Scotch Foursomes Handicaps
The following formula is suggested by the United States Golf Association for determining team handicaps in Scotch Foursomes:
The allowance for straight alternate shots is equal to the sum of the partners’ respective course handicaps.
The allowance for Scotch Foursomes with specific drives is 40% of the partners’ total course handicaps.
Scotch Foursomes is typically played as stroke play in tournament settings. It is played as a match in a competition similar to the Ryder Cup. A foursome of golfers may choose to play Scotch Foursomes as either match play or stroke play in a betting competition.
How are Handicaps Handled In Foursomes?
The handicaps in Foursomes vary depending on the game’s configuration.
Take Team A and Team B, then sum up the combined handicaps of the two golfers on each team.
Consider the following scenario: Team A has a total handicap of 15 whereas Team B has a handicap of 30. The higher handicap total is subtracted from the lower one. In the case, that would be 15. (30-15). After that, divide the sum by two (7.5). Team A must give Team B eight shots because this rounds to eight.
Handicap allowance in stroke play is equal to 50% of the partners’ aggregate course handicaps. Therefore, sum all the course handicaps and divide by two.
Greensomes: also referred to as Scotch Foursomes, are similar to conventional foursomes except that each hole is started by both players, the best ball is selected, and the hole is then played in alternate shots. To learn more, click here.
The rules of Bloodsomes or Gruesomes are identical to those of Greensomes, with the exception that the opposing partner decides which tee shot will be taken.
Chapman: This combination of alternate shot and fourball is sometimes known as the Pinehurst System or American Foursomes. Each couple plays two balls, choosing the best one for the player who drove it to use on his or her third stroke. It bears Dick Chapman’s name, an American amateur golfer.
Foursomes on Significant Occasions
Due to their frequent presence in some of the most prestigious team competitions in the game, foursomes are one of the most well-known golfing formats, says Me Jean-François Goulet. They consist of:
Ryder Cup: Foursomes have been a part of every competition since the first match in 1927. Since it was first contested in 1990, foursomes have been a part of every Solheim Cup.
Presidents Cup: Since the inaugural competition in 1994, foursomes have been a fixture of every Presidents Cup. The Curtis Cup and Walker Cup both employ foursomes.