What Is The 10-Shot Rule In Golf?

What Is The 10-Shot Rule In Golf?

As you might have noticed on television, many golf courses have hundreds of players entering the competition and these players all believe they have an opportunity to win the game or even make it to the final cut. By the final few days, you will notice that the scorecard has been significantly trimmed with fewer players in the competition.

The reduction of players might be directly tied to the 10-shot rule in golf. The rule is used as a method of eliminating players that are too far behind the leader that they would not be able to make a comeback and get back with the leaders. It is often used in the final two days to ensure that only the best players are actively competing.

What Is The 10-Shot Rule In Golf?

The 10-shot rule in golf was originally used to determine which players would make it to the final rounds. On the second day of the tournament, players within 10-shots of the leader would advance to the final rounds and all the players out of the 10-shot range would be cut. This would significantly cut down the field for the final few rounds.

The rule is still used for many competitions and since golf is a very time-sensitive sport, it ensures that only the competitive players will be continuing and making sure they can shoot out for the final few positions. You will notice a significant increase in the speed of play in the final few days due to the use of this rule.

For casual tournaments, it is all about giving players their money’s worth and you will not often find the rule implemented. However, it will all come down to how many players are in the tournament. Dealing with hundreds of players for four days can be daunting, especially if some of the weaker players are holding up the field.

Modern Adaptation Of The 10-Shot Rule

The 10-shot rule is not the only method used to cut some of the players and make sure that the game speeds up. During the 2020 Master Tournament, event organizers decided to change the rule and this would mean only the top 50 players would make it through. One of the issues with this rule is that there might be several ties on the scorecard.

To compensate for this, the Masters kept the 10-rule and all players in the top 50 would automatically advance to the final few rounds. However, players within the 10-shot mark of the leader would also advance to the final few rounds. This meant that more than 50 players would eventually make it through.

One of the advantages of changing the rule to this format is that it gives players more encouragement to make it into the top 50. If you are inside the top 50, you automatically have the opportunity of advancing to the final few rounds. It could also lead to slightly more competitive golfing through the first few days.


While the rule is effective and works wonders on the golf course, you might find that many golf tournaments do not have a cut anymore. Since all the players are relatively closely matched, the rule does not have to be implemented. However, it will also depend on how many players have entered the competition.

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