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Rules for 9-Hole Golf Card Games

"Nine Hole Golf" is a card game of blind chance.
pack of joker card image by Natalia Pavlova from Fotolia.com

The game of golf doesn't always take place on a green, manicured course. Sometimes it can take place at your kitchen table. The card game "9-Hole Golf" is played among two or more people. You take risks to gain rewards in this competition of chance, and just as in regular golf, the lowest score wins.


Two to 4 players typically make up a game. Three standard 52-card decks, including jokers, are required so each player has enough cards. If there are more than 4 players, extra decks should be added accordingly.


The dealer distributes 9 cards clockwise around the table to each player, 1 at a time. Players should lay their cards out in a 3-by-3 square. The remaining cards are placed in a face-down stack in the center of the table. The top card is turned face up and placed next to the stack to start the discard pile. Each player can turn over any 3 of her cards. She may not look at her other cards until she adds them to the discard pile or scores them at the end of a round.

The Game

The player to the left of dealer begins, with the order continuing clockwise. He must decide whether to draw the top card of the blind stack or pluck the top card in the discard pile. Either card can replace any of the 9 cards in his layout. If he chooses from the face-down stack and does not like his card, he can add it to the top of the discard pile without making a swap. It is illegal, however, to put back the top card from the discard pile. You must use it.

If a player likes the card available to her, she can replace one of the other cards in her 9-card layout. She may not look at any of her face-down cards before deciding whether to make a swap--that's part of the fun of the game. If she makes an exchange with a face-down card, that card can then be shown. Any cards replaced should go face up on the discard pile.


A player should knock once all 9 of his cards are face up. Once that occurs, each of the remaining players plays 1 more hand before scoring begins. At this point, players may turn over any cards still face down to figure out their total. The player with the lowest score wins.


Ace: 1 point Two to 10: face value Jack: 10 points Queen: 10 points King: 0 points Joker: -2 points Pairs: 0 points (pairs are formed by cards adjacent to each other in the rows and columns of each players' 9-card layout)


For quicker games, you can play with 3 or 6 cards dealt to each player, instead of 9. Adjust the amount of card decks depending on the number of players.

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