Golf game format: What is foursomes?

Confused about your Presidents Cup formats? Here is the low-down on foursomes along with a few other variations.


Foursomes is played in both the Ryder Cup and the Presidents Cup but is often confused with ambrose. I think it is worthwhile just making the format clear. In addition, I’ve added a few variations on the foursomes format, Canadian Foursomes and American Foursomes which it also outlined below.

Teams consist of two players and use one ball. Golfers take turns teeing off on each hole and thereafter play alternately during the play of each hole. Scoring is the same as a stroke round. When handicaps are used, half of the golfers’ aggregate handicaps is deducted from the total score.
Note: If either player incurs a penalty stroke it does not change the rotation of play.

Canadian Foursomes (sometimes referred to as Greensomes)
Canadian Foursomes is the same as foursomes except that both players play tee shots on every hole. A ball is nominated to continue play with the playing partner playing the next shot.

American Foursomes (sometimes referred to as Pinehurst Foursomes)
This is just like Canadian foursomes except after the tee shots, both golfers play a second stroke with their partner’s ball. One ball is then chosen and play continues alternatively like foursomes.

I only just heard about this one. It is again played in similar fashion to Canadian foursomes but instead of choosing the best ball after your tee shots, your opponents chose which ball you will play! This format seems aptly named.

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