Croquet was born in the British isles in the mid 19th century and soon migrated to most other English-speaking countries. In the United States, manufacturers popularized a version of the sport that could be played on rough turf with lightweight, inexpensive equipment. It is this  scaled-down, toy version of croquet which most Americans have either seen or played.

   The game of Backyard Croquet has maintained its popularity in America for more than a hundred years as the ideal complement of garden parties, family gatherings, outdoor fund-raisers, and social events both raucous and elegant.

  The more sophisticated sport of 6-wicket croquet, requiring heavier equipment, good lawns, and a more intense sporting attitude, though widely played in England and most Commonwealth countries, was rarely seen by Americans until the late 1970's.  With the notable exception of the active members of the Green Gables Croquet Club whose club was organized in 1957 in Spring Lake, NJ.

   The United States Croquet Association was organized by Jack Osborn in 1977 with a nucleus of six east coast clubs including Green Gables. Osborn hammered out a codified set of rules for a uniquely American variety of 6-wicket croquet and tirelessly promoted formation of local clubs and tournaments throughout the country. Today, as many as 10,000 men and women play this elegant and exacting sport on more than 600 greens in the U.S. and Canada.

American Six

Wicket Croquet

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Green Gables Croquet Club

Six-wicket croquet is the complex sport played at croquet clubs all over the world, on six-wicket, one-stake, rectangular courts. It calls for well maintained, level lawns cut very short and involves complex strategy and shot-making skills that allow the players to control one or more balls in order to score winning wickets. Two or four players use a set of four

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balls which are either solid or  striped in blue, red, black and yellow.The games are played with mallets that usually weigh approximately three pounds and are three feet tall. The 16 ounce balls are very hard while the wickets or hoops are constructed of heavy duty cast iron metal to withstand the impact of the balls. Tradition calls for all white clothing on the courts.

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