This month we discuss whether placing on the fairways should be the norm in South Africa and we launch the OUTsurance Invitational, an exciting new competition that could see you playing alongside tomorrow’s stars at the SA Open venue.
At many golf clubs in South Africa, preferred lies have become the norm, allowing players who have hit their ball onto the fairway to place their ball in the best position within a certain distance, such as a card length or a club length.
However, preferred lies – or placing on the fairways – is not endorsed under the World Handicap System. Instead, it is a Local Rule that should be implemented by committees only when there are adverse course conditions.
In the United Kingdom, for example, preferred lies are often in place during the winter months, when courses tend to be waterlogged and mudballs are common. This local rule allows a player to lift, clean and place their ball within a few centimetres of where it was.
In many other countries, when placing on fairways is in use, scores are not allowed for handicapping purposes. In South Africa, these scores are permitted, so there is a tendency for golfers to expect that every lie on the fairway should be perfect and therefore request the clubs to allow placing.
However, placing not only gives golfers a better score, but it also slows down play.
The origins of the game dictate that golf is not a game of perfect and that bad breaks and random results, such as ending in a bad lie in the fairway, are part and parcel of the game we love. No shot, no matter how well hit, deserves a particular outcome.
On TV, we often see professional golfers having to play out of divots or uncomfortably tight lies on the fairway. We need to change our expectations and accept that sometimes you will land in an imperfect spot in the fairway. Obviously, if there are very poor areas then the greenkeeper can mark these as GUR.
We urge all golfers and golf club committees to help us to fall in line with the rest of the world and allow placing on fairways only when there are mud issues affecting play.
Golfers stand a chance to play with tomorrow’s stars at the OUTsurance Invitational, hosted by Blair Atholl
OUTsurance, in partnership with the Handicaps Network Africa and GolfRSA, will be hosting the exclusive OUTsurance Invitational – an all-expenses-paid event that promises to be an unforgettable experience for 12 lucky golfers.
An opportunity to play with South Africa’s best young players
Golfers who have shown a recent improvement in their handicap index will be automatically entered into the competition to stand a chance to win their spot at the event on the 18th of October 2022. The winners will have the chance to play with members of the GolfRSA National Squad, which is made up of some of the most talented young amateur men and women in South Africa.
The National Squad boasts notable former players like Garrick Higgo, a Sunshine Tour winner who has also won on the PGA Tour and DP World Tour, and Jovan Rebula, the British Amateur champion in 2018. Current GolfRSA National Squad member Aldrich Potgieter is the reigning British Amateur champion. This makes the event a unique opportunity for people to meet the future heroes of the golfing world.
Hosted at the world-class Blair Atholl Golf Estate
The Blair Atholl Golf Estate will be welcoming the OUTsurance Invitational guests to their private club in Lanseria. The course is expertly designed by Gary Player, and golfers will be able to play a memorable round against the stunning backdrop of the Magaliesberg Mountain range.
All HNA members can enter the competition for a chance to secure an exclusive, all-expenses-paid golf experience. Learn more about the OUTsurance Invitational here.
Quote of the Month
“Golf is a day spent in a round of strenuous idleness.” – William Wordsworth.