Home' Australian Golf Digest : April 2018 Contents 20 australiangolfdigest.com.au | april 2018
The Golf Life Handicaps
HE chairman of Golf Australia, John
Hopkins, recently announced that
the World Handicap System will be
adopted in Australia.
The WHS is an initiative that the R&A
and the USGA have been working on for a
number of years together with golf’s major
handicapping authorities. Golf Australia
is one of the organisations that have been
integrally involved. Last October, the R&A
and USGA issued a formal invitation to Golf
Australia to adopt the WHS and our national
body has now accepted this invitation.
The decision by Golf Australia to adopt
the WHS follows a period of extensive
consultation with the industry. In
announcing the move, Hopkins advised the
key factors in the decision were:
• “ The WHS will result in just two changes
of substance to the user experience of
Australian golfers and administrators
(these two changes are explained below).
The two changes are both considered
strong improvements to Australian
handicapping. Golf Australia’s chief
statistician is also strongly supportive of
• “Golf is played globally with one set of
playing rules; it makes sense for there to
be only one handicap system.
• “Every other major country will adopt
the WHS. Given this we believe it is
important that GA align its operations
with the global standard and with world’s
best practice. We do not believe strong
governance is best served by continuing
to invest in a stand-alone handicap
system when resources could instead be
directed to supporting the sustainability
of golf clubs and facilities.
• “Golf NSW, Golf NT, Golf Queensland,
GolfSA, Golf Tasmania, Golf Victoria,
Golf WA, and the board of Golf
Management Australia all previously
recommended adoption of the WHS.
• “GA commissioned respected industry
consultant GBAS to poll the views of
individual golfers. This polling displayed
the following sentiments on the WHS.
Change to Daily Handicap calculation:
65% strongly in favour, 27% slightly
in favour, 6% neutral, 1% opposed.
Introduction of Soft Cap: 56% strongly in
favour, 26% slightly in favour, 13% neutral,
4% opposed. Should Australia adopt the
WHS? 81% strongly in favour, 13% slightly
in favour, 4% neutral, 2% opposed.
• “Despite the invitation to all clubs to
provide comment on the proposal to
adopt the WHS, no clubs advocated
against its adoption.”
What will the WHS changes of substance
be for Australia’s clubs and golfers?
1. There will be a Hard Cap of 5 strokes as
per Golf Australia’s current regulation.
There will also be a Soft Cap currently set at
3 strokes, which will be a new regulation for
Australia. The Soft Cap will allow a player
normal increases in their GA Handicap
unless it increases to 3 strokes above their
best GA Handicap from the previous
12-month period. Above this point the GA
Handicap will only be permitted to increase
by 50% of the calculated amount. [Example:
a player’s ‘8 of 20’ calculation is 17.2 . Their
best GA Handicap within the trailing
12-month period is 11.2 . Their GA Handicap
is 15.7 (i.e. 11 .2 + 3 + (50% of 3)]. Modelling
Spanning The Globe
Coming soon: a handicap you can use anywhere
LIFE CONVERTED INTO A 7-HANDICAPPER
On the right day and right course,
you’ll break 80. Congratulations. As a
7-handicapper, you’re in the top 21 percent
of male golfers – top 3 percent for females.
A professional career isn’t happening
anytime soon, but you should be proud of
the level you’ve attained.
Perhaps similar dedication and talent
has led you to quasi-mastery in other
areas. The problem is, the precision of
golf’s handicap system isn’t encountered
any where else. So for those who want to
know how they compare to others – other
than by height – we’ve described the
equivalent of a 7-handicapper in the
following important life pursuits. Go
SOFTBALL Teammates are optimistic
when you’re batting with runners in
scoring position. You don’t strike out.
Fielding errors are accompanied by an
appropriate level of gravity and surprise.
Can reasonably explain the infield-fly rule.
the terrain of the entire mountain and
enjoys doing it. Looks good on good
snow, but reverts to less-graceful form in
icy or variable conditions. Occasionally
sustains minor injuries. As far as jumping,
stylistically has never progressed further
than a spread eagle or heel grab.
POOL Has the potential to go on runs of
five or even six consecutive potted balls,
but more reliably dinks in one or two.
Possesses an elementary understanding
of spin and how to position the cue ball,
but execution is another matter. Extent
of imagination is two shots ahead. Once
purchased a mid-priced cue from a
CAMPING Can provide a comfortable
experience for a friend or loved one in
temperatures warmer than -2 degrees
Celsius. Gets the fire going on the first
try and prepares hot, though not always
delicious, meals. Three nights is the limit.
Always returns looking and smelling like
he or she has been away longer.
TENNIS Verbatim from the National
Tennis Rating Program on a 4.0 player,
so we’re not even making this up: “Has
dependable strokes, including directional
control and depth on both forehand
and backhand sides on moderate shots,
plus the ability to use lobs, overheads,
approach shots and volleys with some
success. Occasionally forces errors
when serving, and teamwork in doubles
is evident. Rallies may be lost due to
BEER PONG Hits on a full rack half the
time. Rarely needs more than three
attempts on a “last cup”. Skills sharpest
after three beers, but after that it’s a
WORK Communicates abstract ideas
clearly in meetings. Returns all e-mails
within the same business day. Is aware
of, though doesn’t necessarily participate
in, style trends. Showers every morning.
Shops online efficiently and averages no
more than an hour reading about sports.
PARENTING Knows the names of child’s
friends and even some teachers. Refrains
from altercations with refs and other
parents at sporting events. Employs guilt
and bribery to drive results. Arguments
may be lost due to impatience.
– max adler
7/3/18 1:25 pm
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