How to give strokes in matchplay

Andy Roberts's picture
Tue, 18 Apr 2017


In matchplay, the difference between two players' handicaps is the number of strokes given by one player to another.

These strokes are taken at different holes according to the stroke index of each hole on the course.

For example, if Player A is receiving four strokes from Player B, then Player A is given an additional shot on the holes where the stroke index is one, two, three and four. 

Singles: the lowest handicap player gives strokes to their opponent based on the full difference between the two handicaps.

Foursomes: each pair adds up their handicaps and takes the difference between the two totals; you then divide this difference by two to get the number of shots the higher handicap pair receives from the lower handicap pair. 

Fourballs: the lowest handicap player gives strokes to the other three players based on three quarters of the difference between the lowest handicap and that of each player