Some Thoughts on Double Banking

Julie Horsley - Issue 28 (2010)

The first time that you play a double-banked game, the idea of 8 balls on one lawn can be quite daunting. In many games, you hardly notice the other game, as you never seem to get in one another’s way, but occasionally there are games when you want to be in the same spot at the same time. There are a few simple rules which help to make games run smoothly.

  1. When starting your turn always stop before you step onto the lawn to check that you are not walking across the path of the person in play.
  2. Be aware of the other game, whilst in play  -  it is easy to become so engrossed in your game that you become oblivious to the other game.
  3. Mark any ball that may be in the way of your shot, having first obtained permission from the person in play.  If in any doubt MARK IT – operator error can result in balls going off course.
  4. Replace any marked balls before you play your next shot and at the same time let the players from the other game know.
  5. If both games want the same hoop (the usual place a bottleneck occurs) then give way to the person there first. If you arrive together, then give way to the person most likely to get out of the way first. If in any doubt, give way to the game with the least marking to be done.

When marking balls please remember to use plastic markers, NEVER metal ones or coins which, if forgotten to be picked up, can cause immense damage to a mower.

Mark balls accurately by taking either the peg or the wire of a hoop as a guide and place the marker behind the ball in question before lifting it. If in any doubt as to how to mark the ball, then use two markers and place them either side of the ball.

If a ball is in a critical position it should not be marked; you should wait until it is cleared.  If it is going to hold up your game too much, then it must be marked very carefully, preferably by a referee.

Full details on Double Banking can be found in the Laws of Association Croquet - LAW 52.