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Extreme croquet

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

eXtreme Croquet is a variation on croquet, popularized by its lack of requirement for specific playing conditions. By its very nature the rules change location to location, but is mainly distinguished by ignoring all requirements pertaining to out-of-bounds or field specifications. A close relative of the croquet played in most backyards and gardens, but expanded by fanatics and played throughout the croquet-playing world.

A typical eXtreme Croquet game starts with location scouting, searching for terrain that would present interesting and novel challenges such as trees, roots, hills, sand, mud, or moving or still water. The wickets are set up according to the "British" figure-eight standard well-known to Americans, and play proceeds following the usual croquet rules. An unquantifiable resiliance and spirit characterizes the play of the game, replacing the calm and sophistication commonly associated with tournament play.

Some say the variation had its origins in 1920s American, while others claim the eXtreme version is simply retroactive, appealing to croquet's supposed origin as a 15th century French shepherd past-time. Today, many clubs or socities keep track of one another by their websites. Notable among these is the Connecticut Extreme Croquet Society, for its storied history as well as its lucrative domain name http://www.extremecroquet.org. Due to one of these signularities, the Connecticut group is often singled out for media attention as various outlets hear of this purportedly new phenomenon.

Through these webpages, various societies are also able to keep track of one another's endless variations on rules. Some of these include

  • When one ball strikes another, the striker may choose to continue play as the strikee's ball
  • Bonus points for passing through a second story of a wicket
  • A player may strike the ball with any part of the mallet, including a billiards-reminiscent style
  • The first player through the second wicket determines the direction of play
  • As each player reaches the starting post after clearing all wickets, he is "poison" and must declare his status to all players
  • Passing through a wicket out of order is punished by sending the ball back to the previous post
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