Golf Tournament Rules for The Masters

By David Green
The Masters is one of golf's four major championships and has been played at the Augusta National Golf Course since 1934.
The Masters is one of golf's four major championships and has been played at the Augusta National Golf Course since 1934.

The Masters Tournament, more commonly known as the Masters, is hosted annually by the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia. The tournament is one of the four major tournaments in men’s professional golf, and is the only major championship held at the same course each year. The tournament was started in 1934 by Clifford Roberts and Bobby Jones, who helped design the course. The Masters is now a 72-hole tournament played over four rounds with a cut made after 36 holes. It also has a variety of features that distinguish it from other golf tournaments.

The Field

The Masters field is significantly smaller than other major championships, with just 90 golfers participating each year. The top 44 players or those within 10 shots of the leader make the cut. The tournament is an invitational event, with the top 50 players in the World Golf Rankings earning invitations, as well as past champions and other players through a variety of exemptions.


Champions of The Masters receive a green jacket, which has been awarded since 1949. Champions are allowed to keep the green jacket for a year, but must then return it to Augusta National for wearing when on the course grounds. After the last hole of the tournament, the winner of The Masters is presented with a green jacket by the previous year’s winner. On the Tuesday evening before each tournament, Augusta National hosts a Champions Dinner to honor past tournament victors. Tradition holds that the defending champion chooses the menu for the dinner.

Par-3 Tournament

Each year, a par-3 tournament is held on a nine-hole, par 27 course on the Wednesday before the tournament begins. The par-3 tournament began in 1960, with players, past champions and invitees eligible to participate. It’s common for players to have their children or family members caddy or even take some of their putts. No player has ever won the par-3 tournament and gone on to win the Masters the same year.


Before 1982, players were required to use a caddie from Augusta National, but since then players have been allowed to bring their own caddies to the tournament. Caddies must wear a green hat with white coveralls. The caddie of the defending champion is given No. 1, with each subsequent number going to players in the order they registered for the tournament.

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