Since the announcements on Tuesday night by the Prime Minister where additional restrictions have been declared, our District Golf Association has been in contact with Golf NSW and Golf Australia (GA) to determine if there are to be any additional impacts on Clubs ability to offer both social and competition golf.
I am pleased to advise that advice received from both Golf Australia and Golf NSW (after their consultation with State and Federal Sports Ministers) is that golf can continue to be played while we all strictly adhere to the social distancing measures as announced by the Federal Government, in conjunction with the relevant state/territory authorities. ACT Sport and Recreation has confirmed that the guidance issued by GA, Golf NSW and the R&A to support the continuation of club level golf is in alignment with the current intentions set out by the Federal/State/Territory Governments.
Golf Pro-shops may also continue to operate so long as there is strict compliance with social-spatial distancing regulations.
As you would be aware from my last post (Monday 24 March) we have set in place a range of measures for both social and competition play by members. Murray is encouraging to all Green Fee players to apply the same measure when they play on our course.
Plainly put, we will only keep our course open and operating if we strictly adhere to the social distancing (having at least 1.5 mts between you and your playing partner/s at all times while at the course). To remind you the measures we currently have in place (some of which are Local Rules) are:
- Players will enter their own hole scores on the scorecard (it is not necessary for a marker to do it).
- Enter your Marker’s score on your card e.g. your scorecard should have both sets of scores recorded.
- It is not necessary to have a marker physically certify the player’s hole scores. Some form of verbal certification should take place.
- Write your Marker’s name where your Marker would normally sign.
- Scorecards are to be entered into the kiosk as usual. Please use a pencil or tee when ‘tapping’ the screen. Doing this will alleviate the need to touch the screen with any part of one’s person. Once the scores have been entered place your cards into the box, as you would normally do.
- Committee members will continue to check the cards while doing ‘closeout’ but will use appropriate measures when handling/checking cards to minimise the risk of transmission.
- Players MUST leave the flagstick in the hole at all times when putting.
- A device has been placed in each hole to ensure that players can lift their ball easily out of the hole without touching the sides of the cup. A ball at rest in the hole will be considered to be holed even if it is not entirely below the level of the hole.
- Do not pick-up another person’s golf ball.
- Rakes have been removed from all Bunkers. Players are requested to smooth bunkers using their feet or a club after their shot.
- Should your ball come to rest in an area that has not been ‘smoothed’ adequately, players my place their ball within a card length of the affected lie. Good practice would be to consult your playing partner if you deem it necessary ‘place’ your ball.
- Sand buckets should continue to be used to fill divots. Our suggestion to players is that they handle the bucked with their ‘gloved’ hand or using a piece of cloth for added protection.
- Due to the risk of transmission, only single-player use of golf carts will be permitted.
An additional measure which would strengthen our current measures that you could consider applying when you are playing is:
- Players should putt one at a time. By one player putting until she or he has completed putting, physical distancing can be better maintained. We accept that this may slow play a little but, this measure would keep players from standing in close proximity with others, thereby further reducing the possibility of transmission.
Please note, that this is the situation and position at as today. As we know we are in an incredibly dynamic and fluid environment with changes happening regularly. This guidance may well change in the future and we will continue to be led by the directions at Federal/State and Territory levels.
Please do the right thing and encourage others to do the same. Our ability to keep playing will depend on this.
Richard Oliver / President