A simple introduction
Golf Croquet is played with four balls, Blue and Black versus Red and Yellow. each turn consists of just one shot, and play is strictly in sequence: Blue, then Red, then Black, Yellow and Blue again. In doubles each player always plays the same colour ball.
All four balls attempt to get through Hoop 1. As soon as one ball successfully goes completely through the hoop in the correct direction, that side scores a point, and all players then switch their attention to the next hoop in the sequence. The first side to seven points is the winner.
Hitting the opponent out of position is legal. Players will often clear an opponent’s ball 30 yards, in the hope of keeping it out of range. There will often be complex tactical choices available. These could include:
- running the hoop
- putting your ball in a position to go through the hoop in your next shot
- knocking an opponent’s ball out of position
- blocking the path between your opponent’s ball and the hoop
- knocking your side’s other ball into a better position
The old handicap system, which gave the weaker side in a game extra turns, is being replaced by a new variant of Golf Croquet called Advantage Play which allows players of different abilities to play more competitive games. In Advantage Play, the starting scores are adjusted depending on the players’ handicaps so that the stronger player may have to score more than 7 hoops to win the game and the weaker player fewer than 7 hoops.
In doubles, the handicaps of the two players are added together and divided by two (halves are rounded up) and the starting scores are then taken from the table.
Visit the Croquet Association website for