How to Play the Golf Game Called 'Mulligan and Recall'

Mulligan and Recall is a golf game for a group of four golfers who pair off into two teams. So it's two-vs.-two. You can play it as match play, stroke play, anything you like.

But the key to the game is found in its name: On each nine, each golfer of the four gets one mulligan ... but the other side also gets one recall — that is, the ability to recall one of your side's shots and force you to replay it.

And that's the basics of Mulligan and Recall: All four golfers get one mulligan on the front nine and one mulligan on the back nine; each team gets one recall per nine to use against the other team.

There are some variations. First, in the spelling: It can also be written as Mulligan & Recall, Mulligan-Recall or Mulligan/Recall.

Second, in the number of recalls. The usual is one recall per side per nine. Some golfers prefer to play it as one recall per player per side, making the number of mulligans and recalls equal. This is a very common variation.

Third, some golfers like to stipulate that each time a side loses a hole, it picks up an extra mulligan to use on that nine. We recommend that if the two teams are reasonably evenly matched this variation not be used. It slows down the game and tends to force some artificial balance on the match. However, if one side is clearly better than the other, using the lose-a-hole-get-a-mulligan stipulation can help even things out. Just be very aware of pace of play when using this variation.

Mulligan and Recall is a game that gained some attention when FOX Sports announcer Brad Faxon talked about it on the air during a couple of U.S. Open broadcasts, in 2017 and 2019. Faxon said that it was a popular game at the club where he and Louis Oosthuizen, among others, were members and enjoyed playing it.

You can find more golf games and side bets in our Formats & Bets section, or see these for more ideas:

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