Golf Formats – Texas Scramble

Texas Scramble is a competition format that rewards both team and individual play using the popular Stableford format as a basis for scoring.

Stableford Scorecard

Example of Texas Scramble Format

With Texas Scramble each team member tees off at each hole. The captain selects the best tee shot, then each member drops his balls from this point and plays out the hole with his/her own ball. The selected drive is counted as the first shot of each of the team members for that particular hole.

The use of another golfer's tee shot DOES NOT apply on par 3 holes. On these holes each member of the team must play their ball for the entire hole.

There is one additional requirement. During the course of the round all player's drives must be used on a set number of occasions. So if you have a beginner golfer in your group it may be prudent to use their drives early in the round so as to not put pressure on them as the end of the game approaches.

The method of scoring in Texas Scramble is based on the popular Stableford format which is outlined below.

At the end of the round, the captain submits the scorecard which clearly shows the following:

  • Individual Stableford Scores for each player
  • Team Stableford Score comprising the best 2 scores from each player for each hole

Golfers are allocated a certain number of points on a hole depending on the net score of the player (or team). The aim of Stableford is to accumulate the most number of points over the course of 18 holes.

Depending on a players handicap a certain number of strokes are allocated on each hole.

The table of points is based on the net score of the individual player (after handicap adjustment) or the best team score as follows:

  • Double Bogey or worse - 0 points
  • Par - 2 points
  • Birdie - 3 points
  • Eagle - 4 points
  • Albatross - 5 points

Example—Golfer off 22 Handicap

If a golfer plays off a 22 handicap then they will receive 22 shots during the course of the round - 1 on each of the 18 holes and 2 strokes on those holes which are rated in difficulty of 1, 2, 3 and 4.

In this case a par 4 hole which is rated number 3 in difficulty will ensure the golfer receives 2 shots on the hole thus making the hole a Par 6. So if this golfer then scores a 5 on the hole this equates to a net birdie thus scoring the person 3 points (refer above table)

Example—Golfer off 14 Handicap

If a golfer plays off a 14 handicap then they will receive 14 shots during the course of the round—one on each of the 14 hardest holes. No strokes will be received on the holes rated 15, 16, 17 and 18 in difficulty.

Key Features of Texas Scramble

  • Each player plays their own golf ball after the original choice of tee shot and records points based on their net score
  • Each players plays their own ball for the duration of each par 3 hole
  • Points are awarded according to the above table and reflect the difference between the Net Score of the golfer against the par of each particular hole
  • Once a player has reached a certain number of strokes the ball can be picked up without penalty and move onto the next hole
  • Each hole has a difficulty rating (as noted on the scorecard) which helps the golfer to determine if they receive an extra shot relative to the par of that hole
  • Points, once awarded, cannot be taken away. This means that a player who has played a good first 9 and then faded may still be in the running to win a prize for the good holes they played

Positives of Texas Scramble

  • The choice of the best tee shot provides players with the comfort that they will generally be in a good position off the tee at which point they can then continue playing with their own ball
  • It allows each golfer to feel as though they have played the golf course with their own ball. This is often important to participants especially if they have not played a particular golf course before
  • Once a player has reached a certain number of strokes the ball can be picked up without penalty. This helps a player who may have been struggling on a given hole simply move onto the next hole
  • Good scores on individual holes are rewarded with a greater number of points allocated. Other formats (particularly Par) may not always reward good play fairly
  • Stableford can be a fast format if the standard of golfers is intermediate or higher
  • Points, once scored, cannot be taken away. This helps to relieve pressure on a player who may have started well but faded badly

Negatives of Texas Scramble

  • Stableford is a format most suited where the standard of players in your field is intermediate or higher. Beginner golfers may feel intimidated (even though they can pick up their ball after a certain number of strokes) playing with better golfers
  • Stableford can be a slow format if the standard of golfers is beginner or thereabouts

Overall Comment on Texas Scramble

A format where good play is rewarded and takes the pressure of individuals with the choice of the best tee shot allowed on all non par 3 holes. Generally is only used where the standard of golfers in the field is intermediate or higher. Used on occasion for Corporate Golf Days.

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