Toad In The Hole Rules


The Basics

A coin is tossed to decide who throws first. Or a throw nearest to the hole.

The first player throws two toads, the second three toads and thereafter, four toads are thrown each turn.

1 point is scored for each toad on the surface of the table and 2 points for each toad in the hole.

Any toad which hits the back board or falls to the floor does not score. However, such a dead toad can influence the score of another toad – e.g. by knocking it into the hole to increase its score or by knocking it into the back or off the table to so that it doesn’t score.

The winner is the first player to score exactly 31 points, playing from 31 to 0. If a player scores more than 31, they are bust and there is no score for that turn.

Once the score required to win is three or less, a player may only play as many toads, in their turn, as points required. So if 2 points are required to win at the start of the turn, only 2 toads should be thrown for that turn. Not all toads have to be used when throwing for a finish.

A Downloadable PDF version of the basic rules is available here to save or print

Brighton & Hove Toad in the Hole League

(Lewes and District Toad in the Hole League used as a guide)

Rules (Updated /Sept. 2022)

League Match rules
  • Each match consists of seven games – four singles games, two doubles games, and one team game for a minimum of four players, if both teams have more players and in agreement, more can be named for the team game.
  • Each match is played with the home team’s toad coins.
  • Each game is worth ONE point to the winners – i.e. four points are available for the singles, two for the doubles, and one for the team game.
  • All games are best of three legs.
  • The Home Team always name their player(s) first. This can be naming the singles players first, once played, the doubles can then be named, then the team players for the final game.
  • There would then be a toss of a coin (or similar fair method, a toss nearest the hole is often used), the winner to decide in which leg to go first. Players go first in alternate legs. The third leg need not be played if it is 2-0. If it is 1-1, another toss will be made for the final leg.
  • In Cup matches, there will an initial toss of the coin before the Singles matches to decide who will name their player first, with subsequent games alternating, and again before the Doubles and Team, if required.
  • The rules of each leg are – four toads, 31 down, first player throws two toads, second three, then 4 each. Once score required is less than four, one toad is played per point needed, and an exact number is required to finish. (Four toads in the hole does NOT automatically win the leg.) Any player may choose not to throw all of their toads in any turn.
  • Any toad which hits the back board or falls to the floor cannot be a scoring toad under any circumstances. However, such a “dead” toad CAN influence the play of another valid toad – e.g. by knocking it into the hole to increase its score, or, indeed, by knocking it into the back or off the table to invalidate its score.
  • If at the start of a game a player inadvertently throws more toads than permitted, the first toads thrown shall count (as if the extra toad(s) had not been thrown).
  • If a player busts but still has a spare toad, s/he can throw the last toad to LOWER their score.
League rules

As this is a new league and this site is still under development, the reporting and recording of results may change over time.

Reporting of results

The results of each match must be sent to the fixtures organiser by BOTH captains, who should also retain a written copy of the scores in case of query. The result must be received by the end of Thursday following the match. All results should either be texted to 07729771458, or emailed to

Team captains can record the results directly into the website here. (this is still work in progress, if you are using this on a phone please make sure it is rotated to landscape for the form to load correctly).

Postponements and re-arranged matches

If any team is unable to play a match on the original date for any reason, the captain of that team must contact the other team giving at least 48 hours’ notice. The match must then be re-arranged to be played as soon as possible. Details of any matches which are being re-arranged as above must be sent to the fixtures organiser by the end of the Wednesday following the original scheduled date. All re-arrangements, but not necessarily the matches, must be made within 4 weeks.

Failure to give notice

If a team fails to give the required notice of a requested postponement or fails to arrive for a match, they will be warned and lose 5 points for repeat occurrences. The match is still expected to be played at a future date, but if no convenient date can be found, (and all discussion concerning this should be copied to the Fixtures Sec), then the result will be decided by the Committee, considering efforts made by both teams, their current form, etc

If a team turns up without a minimum of 4 players, for whatever reason, they should play all matches, as if the missing person(s) was scoring 0! So, with 3 turning up, 3 singles matches would be played, the 4th one conceded (although it could be played as a friendly for the 4th player, who would chose his/her opponent but no 8s would count for the substitute person). After the first doubles, the second doubles would be 2 against 1, with the 1 only getting 1 throw in a round, (eg a3, b3, a4, -, a3, b3, a4, -, etc, ie 2 throws against 1). Similarly in the team game, with 4 against 3, throw a1, b1, a2, b2, a3, b3, a4, a1, etc.

All incomplete matches should be reported to for them to award the points appropriately. It is wrong for teams involved, if it proved impossible to finish the match, to decide the outcome, as this might distort the final League positions.

League positions, promotion and relegation

The league positions will be determined as follows:

  • Number of GAMES won. Where this is equal between two or more teams, then
  • Number of MATCHES won. If there is still a tie, then (at the end of the season) –
  • The record between the two teams – i.e. the total number of games won adding together the home and away results.
  • If there is still a tie there will be a play-off to determine the league position if crucial for championship, promotion, or relegation.

Participation in the league implies acceptance of promotion and relegation between the divisions.

Division 1

  • The team in last place will be relegated
  • The teams in 4th and 5th place will have a playoff match at a neutral venue, the loser of that match will be relegated

Division 2

  • The team in first place will be promoted
  • The teams in 2nd and 3rd place will have a playoff match at a neutral venue, the winner of that match will be promoted

Team and Player registration

A team must have a minimum of 4 players and a maximum of 10 registered.

Registration for players, up to a maximum of 10 per team, will remain open until end of November for that season, after the last Wednesday of November no more players will be allowed to register for a team.

A nominated Team captain

It is required for players to be registered, this can be done by the team captain or the player, alternatively the team captain can send the list to

A player cannot play for more than one league team in a season.


A nominal fee of £25 per team and £25 per venue per season.

This fee is to help cover the costs of web hosting and the software required to make this function.

Please contact for payment details.