Variable Team Best-Ball
An Irish Four-Ball, sometimes known as an Italian Four-Ball, is a form of Best-Ball competition for teams of 4 competitors, in which the number of balls to be scored at each hole increases as play progresses – 1 best ball of the team for six holes, 2 best balls for 5 holes, 3 best balls for 4 holes and all 4 teammates’ scores on the last 3 holes:
An Irish Four-Ball is usually played, gross or net, by teams of similar skills. It's a fine example of the potential for steadily increasing pressure in competition. Handicap allowances for this form of play would usually be full handicap or 90% of Course Handicap for men and 95% of Course Handicap for women.
Frequently, the game is played as an Irish Stableford, computing the individual and team scores with Stableford points. This removes the possibility of unlimited damage to a team’s score in the closing holes.