What Is a Sunday Ball in Golf?

"Sunday ball" is a slang term in golf for a do-over shot. In other words, it's another term for a mulligan.

For good measure, "lunch ball" is another term that describes that same thing as Sunday ball and mulligan. Mulligan is by far the most commonly used of the three terms, followed by lunch ball with Sunday ball bringing up the rear.

So, a Sunday ball: Did you just play a stroke that was terrible, and want to try again by dropping a ball and playing another stroke? That's the do-over sometimes called a Sunday ball.

Most groups of golfers who play together have their own rules for how many Sunday balls a golfer is allowed during a round, and what types of strokes they allow each other to re-play. (Just note that Sunday balls are always illegal under the rules of golf. If you want to play by the rules, there are no do-overs.)

Probably most common among mulligan practices is that a group will agree to allow two Sunday balls, one from the No. 1 tee and another from the No. 10 tee only. In that case, if your first drive of the day or first drive of the back nine is terrible, you can tee up a new ball and re-play the stroke. Another common practice among golfers is allowing just one Sunday ball, but it can be used anywhere on the golf course except the putting green.

And some groups don't have any rules at all about using them, it's a free-for-all. Just remember: If you want to claim that you play by the Official Rules of Golf, no Sunday balls. (Why is it called a Sunday ball? Your guess is as good as ours.)

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