Rules of Handicapping FAQs

Handicap Competitions

Q. Why does the player with the lowest Playing Handicap play at scratch (0) in match play?

A. By stroking off the low ball, the higher handicap player(s) receive their handicap strokes on the holes where they need them most – resulting in more holes tied compared to holes won or lost. If players used full Playing Handicaps in match play, the better player would have the advantage on the more difficult holes (because he or she would also be getting strokes) and the other player(s) would have an advantage on the easier holes.