Tournament Rules


  1. The IGBO Annual Tournament is an USBC certified tournament and maintains a Moral Support Certification for nonmembers of USBC. In part, the Moral Support Certification permits the use of FIQ recognized league averages and tournament scores to determine a bowlers entering average for the tournament. All participants are subject to the USBC rules and jurisdiction for the event. The tournament is a mixed handicap competition open to men and women by invitation only.
  2. All participants must be a member of IGBO or qualify under the Moral Support Certification. If the participant is not a member of USBC, he or she must pay the appropriate participation fee.
  3. If the participant is not a member of IGBO, in any of its membership classes, he or she must become an IGBO Associate Member and pay the appropriate Associate Membership fee. The participant shall have the opportunity to apply for Associate Membership at the time of registration. Associate Membership applications must be approved by the General Membership prior to participation.

Event Participation

  1. The tournament events shall be handicap events and are as follows: Singles, Doubles and Team. Optional Individual Scratch Divisions will also be offered.
  2. Each participant shall bowl three (3) games per event and must enter all three events. Teams will consist of four (4) members comprising any combination of men and women. Men and women will compete on an equal basis. Doubles partners must come from the same team.
  3. Each participant may only bowl once in each event.
  4. A professional bowler that is not a current IGBO league member or current organizational member, with a minimum of 21 games, may not bowl in the Annual Tournament. Only one (1) professional bowler per team will be allowed. A professional bowler is defined as any person who has been a “card-carrying” member of a professional bowling organization within the past twelve months preceding the IGBO Annual Tournament.
  5. Employees of bowling centers being used by the Host City who are not IGBO league members shall not be permitted to participate in the IGBO Annual Tournament.

Optional Scratch Division(s)

  1. Bowlers will have the opportunity to participate in an Optional Scratch and/or Scratch Masters event(s) for an additional fee. Participants will compete in one of five divisions determined by their entering average. Those divisions are as follows:

    Optional Scratch Entry Fee:
    $20.00 |  Habanero: Averages 200 and above
    $20.00 |  Cayenne: Averages 185 to 199
    $20.00 | Serrano: Averages 170 to 184
    $20.00 | Jalapeno: Averages 150 to 169
    $20.00 | Poblano: Averages 0 to 149

    Scratch Master Entry Fee:
    $50.00 | Habanero: Averages 200 and above
    $45.00 | Cayenne: Averages 185 to 199
    $40.00 | Serrano: Averages 170 to 184
    $35.00 | Jalapeno: Averages 150 to 169
    $30.00 | Poblano: Averages 0 to 149

    a) The Optional Scratch shall use the scratch scores (without handicap) from the handicap portion of the tournament to determine winners. The optional scratch shall be divided into three separate categories within each division:

    Highest Single Scratch Game (from any of the events); Highest Scratch Series (from any of the events, three games required); and Highest Scratch All Events (from the nine game total of all three events).

    b) The Scratch Masters shall be round-robin format of the highest eight scratch all-events bowlers from each division. In case of a tie for the eighth place, the bowler with the highest three game series from any event will be the eighth bowler. Qualifiers and the alternate must sign in at least fifteen (15) minutes before the match game competition is scheduled to begin. A bowler that has not signed in will be disqualified and the alternate will be used. A disqualified bowler will forfeit their entry fee.

    The round robin format shall consist of seven matches and one position round, with thirty bonus points awarded to the winner of each match (fifteen for a tie). Participants will be allowed 10 minutes of practice across the division round robin lanes only. There will be a stepladder final after the round robin and position round, consisting of the highest four bowlers from the eight games with bonus points. All previous scores are dropped, and the stepladder format will consist of three matches: fourth place bowls third place; the winner advances to bowl second place; and the winner advances to bowl first place for the title. No bonus points are used, and scores are dropped after each match. In the event of a tie, a ninth and tenth frame roll-off will take place to determine the winner of each match. Participants in the stepladder finals will be allowed to throw two balls on each lane prior to his or her first match. No other practice is allowed.

    Scores used for the Optional Scratch Divisions shall be those Scratch games (without handicap) as bowled in the Handicap Division of the tournament.

Awards and Prizes

  1. All cash awards shall be based on the Total Pins PLUS assigned handicap for each event (with exception of the Optional Scratch Divisions).
  2. Awards will be given, in the Handicap Division, for the best Singles, Doubles, Team, Individual All Events and Team All Events. Individual All Events is defined as the nine game total plus handicap of an individual bowler. Team All Events is defined as the nine game total plus handicap of the four (4) members of the same team who actually bowled the team event. In the event that any member of the team does not bowl the nine games, that team will be ineligible for the Team All Events recognition.
  3. The award ratio for the Handicap Division shall be at a minimum of at least 1:10. Individual All Events and Team All Events shall be at a minimum of at least 1:20.
  4. Awards in the Optional Scratch Divisions shall be given for the Best Single Game (from any of the events), Best Three (3) Game Series (from any of the events) and Best All Events (nine game total).
  5. The award ratio for the Optional Scratch Divisions shall be at a minimum of at least 1:20 per division.
  6. Prizes will be distributed via check payable in US currency within thirty (30) days of the completion of the tournament, barring any protests. A tie in any position will result in the sum of the prizes being aggregated for the tied positions and divided equally by the number of ties for that placing. Prize funds will be based on 100% participation.
  7. 100% of the entry fee from each division in the Optional Scratch Divisions shall be returned to that division and 100% of the entry fee less lineage and trophy expense shall be returned for Scratch Masters.

Entering Averages

  1. Any bowler entering the IGBO Annual Tournament must use a ten-pin average acceptable to USBC. The following rules shall be used to determine the entering average:
    a) The league average as of December 31, 2015 with a minimum of 21 games. If competing in more than one league, the bowler MUST submit the COMPOSITE AVERAGE of all leagues bowled, even if a league has less than 21 games bowled.
    b) If “a” is not available, use 2015 book average (minimum 21 games). If competed in more than one league, the bowler MUST submit the COMPOSITE AVERAGE of all leagues bowled, even if a league has less than 21 games bowled.
    c) If neither “a” or “b” is available, use the 2015 final summer league average (minimum 21 games). If competed in more than one league, the bowler MUST submit the COMPOSITE AVERAGE of all leagues bowled, even if a league has less than 21 games bowled.
    d) If neither “a”, “b” or “c” is available, a current season average (minimum 21 games) as of April 1, 2016 will be accepted. If competing in more than one league, the bowler MUST submit the COMPOSITE AVERAGE of all leagues bowled, even if a league has less than 21 games bowled.
    e) Non-certified bowlers shall use a minimum average of 130 and must submit all league averages and tournament scores (12-months immediately preceding the entry cut-off date) for possible average adjustment.
    f) If none of the scenarios above are applicable, then the entering average shall be equal to the Tournament Scratch Score (see Rule 19).
    g) The above averages MUST be verified by the use of:
    1) League standing sheet, signed and dated by League Officer, or
    2) Letter from League President or Secretary, or
    3) Photocopy of book average (with year noted), signed and dated by League Officer.
    h) Averages from “Sports Condition” leagues are not acceptable at any time.
  2. The Tournament Scratch Score will be set equal to the highest entering average (as outlined in Rule 18) as of the entry cut-off date for the tournament. Should a substitution and/or bowler replacement be necessary after the entry cut-off date, the Tournament Scratch Score will NOT be affected.
  3. The per-game handicap for the tournament shall be based at 90% of the difference between the bowler’s entering average (as determined in Rule 18) and the Tournament Scratch Score. Negative handicaps shall not apply.
  4. USBC rules regarding the BOWLER’S responsibility to verify the accuracy of his/her entering average, whether submitted by the bowler, the team captain, or any other individual, applies to all bowlers. Failure to use proper average shall disqualify scores if the submitted average is lower than the actual average, thereby resulting in a lower classification or more handicap. Event placement and/or prize winnings shall be based on the higher average should the submitted average prove to be higher than the bowler’s actual average.

Average Adjustment

  1. The tournament management has the authority to adjust the entering average of any bowler. Average adjustments will be applied as set forth under USBC rules. All average adjustments will be completed prior to the start of each event. A bowler unwilling to accept an average adjustment is entitled to a full refund for that event. If a bowler has a current tournament average (comprised of a minimum of 21 games bowled during the 12-months immediately preceding the official start date of this tournament) that is one or more pins higher than their Entering Average (as outlined in Rule 2016 IGBO 18), they must use the higher tournament average as their entering average. Per Rule 21, it is the bowler’s responsibility to report ALL tournament scores that are relevant in calculating their current tournament average. Failure to report this information may result in AUTOMATIC disqualification and loss of all prize winnings – subject to Tournament Management discretion.

Attendance and Substitutes

  1. It is solely and entirely the bowler’s responsibility to be present at the assigned lanes at the time of bowling. Each bowler shall have the total responsibility to arrive in time to bowl. Mechanical failures, transportation irregularities, improper directions and related reasons DO NOT alter the application of Rules 24 and 25 below (USBC rules will apply). Tournament offered transportation and catastrophic events will be subject to Tournament Management discretion.
  2. Complete Doubles and Team entrants must be present for bowling each event. If a team member is not present, the team may use an authorized substitute (Rule 26). If no substitute is available, a zero score will be used for the missing bowler or bowlers.
  3. Late bowlers will begin bowling in the frame in which they are ready, with prior frames being scored as zero. No practice balls will be allowed for late bowlers.
  4. Substitutes may bowl at the discretion of the tournament management. Their entering average must comply with the rules previously stated. Substitutes must complete an entry form.
  5. Bowlers will be allowed two (2) practice balls on each lane per event.

Entry Requirements

  1. IGBO XXXVI registration will only be available via online registration through PayPal. Registration will close at midnight on May 12, 2016- two weeks prior to the first bowling event of the tournament. Non-bowling participants may enter the event up to the close of tournament registration, provided banquet accommodations are available. Entries received after 11:59pm, April 20, 2016 will incur a late fee of $10.00 USD. HOWEVER, no late entries will be accepted, UNLESS at the discretion of the tournament registrar.
  2. Entries shall be limited to a maximum of 480 bowlers. Once this maximum has been reached, no more entries can be accepted. Entrants’ acceptance will be based on the order in which received. Once an entry has been accepted, refunds will only be issued at the Host Committee’s discretion.
  3. Partial team entries will be accepted and the tournament management will make every effort to fill the vacancies.

Scoring Errors

  1. After a score has been recorded, it cannot be changed unless there has been an obvious error in scoring or calculation has occurred. Obvious errors must be corrected by a tournament official immediately upon discovery. Questionable errors must be reported to a tournament official within two (2) hours of the error, and will be decided by tournament management. (USBC Rule 328).


  1. Protests and appeals must be in writing, stating the grounds for the protest and/or appeal.
    a) A protest involving eligibility or playing rules must be filed with the tournament management before tournament prizes are paid.
    b) The decision of the tournament management shall be final unless a written appeal is filed with the local association or USBC Headquarters prior to tournament prizes being awarded/paid. Upon notification of a protest or appeal, tournament management must withhold all affected prizes until the protest or appeal is resolved.


  1. All other USBC rules will apply.
  2. Any person attending and requiring special needs MUST notify the tournament management in writing.
  3. The team captain MUST sign the entry form acknowledging he/she has read the rules. In the case of online registration, the time stamp will be considered the team captain’s acknowledgement.
Rules Updated 10/3/15

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