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Team Golf Play - Scramble Tournaments

In sports, there is a science to everything. Many of us weekly golfers participate in numerous charity events sponsored and held at private country clubs. This is always a great opportunity for giving back to the community, as well as spending a day with friends and enjoying the beloved game of golf.

Scramble tournaments are held year round and provide us all with an opportunity to shoot lower scores than usual, since we're given a decided advantage over the golf course. The team format allows four golfers to select the best played ball on every shot taken on the respective hole that is being played.

The Science of Scramble Tournaments

Unfortunately many golfers do not take advantage of the science involved with performing at the highest possible level that can be reached. The most advantageous way to play a scramble is this:

  • The team needs to realize that they are not competing with each other, but are in fact a team.

Each player needs to make his best effort to make his teammate better. The simplest way to do this is to check egos at the door, and play as if your shot provides information to the next golfer.

Team Golf Basics

The straightest driver of the golf ball (not the longest) should always play first. If need be, he should use a 3 wood in order to provide the first ball safely in the fairway.

The next 3 golfers should all try to better his shot. If one golfer hits the left side of the fairway, the next should take aim at the right side. Lastly, the anchor golfer should be the longest of the 4 and should try to hit his golf ball as far as he can.

Gauging Shot Distance

When gauging the distance of the shot, it's important that the first golfer knows how far his clubs travel. His job is to simply try to get the most accurate distance to the pin, providing the other 3 golfers with this valuable information. The actual club selection isn't important, but the distance that the first golfer hits is.


The first golfer should always provide a "strong line" to the hole. This might even mean that he hits his putt 3 to 4 feet past the hole, but not more than that. If there was any guess as to how the putt breaks, the initial golfer breaks this seal. The next golfer can then use this information and possibly play more break than the first, due to the fact that he will be hitting it less hard.

Placing the Golf Ball

The most important issue in putting is that all 4 balls be placed at exactly the same spot, creating a track to the hole:

  • Balls that are placed almost at the same spot all take their individual lines to the hole, and are effected by their own respective grain as it relates to their selected line.
  • But balls that are placed identically have more chance to stay on line due to the fact that the first 3 balls will in fact bend the grain of the grass in favor of the last golfer.

Last but not least, make sure that you follow the rules of the game and maintain the honor system. Let's keep golf a game of integrity, so that it remains the standard of all sports.

Keep golfing,

Robert R. LaPorte

"the Golf Nut"

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