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Glossary of Croquet Terms


Eligibility to hit another ball with your ball to earn bonus strokes; i.e., if Blue is alive on Red, that means that the Blue ball may legally strike the Red and gain two bonus strokes as a result.

American Rules Croquet

The form of 6-wicket croquet most commonly played at USCA clubs in North America.

Association Rules Croquet

(Also called "International Rules Croquet") the form of the sport of 6-wicket croquet most commonly played in countries outside North America.

Backyard Croquet

The game played by millions, usually with lightweight equipment on slow and/or irregular surfaces, on a court up to 100' by 50', with nine wickets and two stakes in the traditional double-diamond configuration.


A ball that needs to be repositioned on the court, usually in relation to another ball which it has roqueted, but also to be placed on the boundary margin after going out of bounds.

Boundary Margin

The imaginary line inside the designated boundary, where balls are placed after going out of bounds — usually either one mallet head's length or one mallet length from the boundary line.

Bonus Stroke

The stroke(s) earned by either going through a wicket or striking another ball with one's own ball.


Scoring more than one wicket in a single turn, i.e., a "three wicket break" or an "all-round break" (scoring all the wickets in one turn)--the ultimate achievement in American Rules croquet.

Clearing Deadness

The restoration of eligibility to hit other balls for bonus strokes which is achieved when a ball goes through its proper wicket.

Continuation Stroke

The bonus stroke earned for going through a wicket or following the Croquet Bonus Stroke.

Croquet Heaven

A mythical state or region where all attempted roquets are successful and all wicket strokes are achieved on the first try and all rushes are executed with perfect precision; the place where good croquet players are said to go after their final peg-out.

Croquet Stroke or Croquet Shot

The first of two bonus strokes earned for hitting another ball with your ball; the game is named for this unique stroke, which allows players to move around not only their own balls but also the opponent's.


Ineligibility to earn bonus strokes by hitting another ball with your own ball.

Guerilla Croquet

A variety of Backyard Croquet now sanctioned by the USCA and recommended for most casual 9-wicket play under the name of BASIC BACKYARD RULES.

Golf Croquet

The simplest form of the game, excellent for beginning players and large social events.


What a "wicket" is called in Commonwealth countries.

Hoop Doc

The therapist or psychiatrist consulted by a player suffering extremes of anxiety associated with wicket-shooting errors.

International Rules Croquet

(See "Association Rules Croquet")


Another name for the stake.

Pegged out or Staked out

Out of the game, after one's ball or balls are driven into the finishing stake; also, a croquet player's euphemism for the physical demise of another player.

Pioneer Wicket

The next wicket to be scored plus one, as in one's instruction to one's partner: "Set up in front of my pioneer wicket."


A stroke in which the striker's ball hits another ball upon which it is entitled to take bonus strokes.

Rush Shot

A roquet that sends the ball a significant distance in the targeted direction of play.

Six-Wicket Croquet

The serious or advanced forms of the sport of croquet played throughout the world, as contrasted with the more casual forms of Backyard Croquet, 9-Wicket Croquet or Lawn Croquet.


The most common name for the peg in the middle of the six-wicket court or on either end of the 9-Wicket or Backyard court.


The metal or wire openings set in the lawn through which points are made, also called "hoops". They can drive you crazy.