We know there is a lot to think about when arranging your match with your opponents, we want to share some top tips and considerations to make this as easy as possible so you and your team can enjoy the game and competition.
The competition rules have 2 key rules around arranging matches, one is the home club is responsible for organising by proposing a date, and the other the minimum dates that can be offered are 3 dates where one of which must be a weekend.
So the key responsibilities are clear, however that doesn’t stop the away team making contact with the home team beforehand with a friendly hello, the team contact details are available to all team captains which includes, email and telephone so getting in touch shouldn’t be an issue. However, if in the unlikely event you are having difficulties getting in touch, contact us and we’ll try to help, we also have contact details of the club contacts and secretaries.
Email is a really useful way to keep track of decisions and agreements, if you’ve had a call and verbally offered dates of play, or agreed on the date, following up with an email to confirm makes sure everyone is aware and if any mistakes they are easy to spot then rectify. There’s nothing worse than turning up late or worse the whole team turning up on a wrong day!
Remember when proposing dates and agreeing dates to think about some “what if’s” and could you mitigate against them?;
- What if the weather is bad, is there enough time after this date to rearrange and play the match before the last day of play?
- What if we need to go to sudden death (or playoff in the ladies round 1), will there be enough daylight to conclude the match on that day if we tee off at that time?
- What if some of my core team of 7 players cannot make the date, have I got a list of reserves or alternative players who meet the competition eligibility criteria, so I can still form a full team?
The committee has no direct guidance on these matters but we expect team captains to take this as their responsibility, under rule 3, when arranging a match.
We also have published advice on tee time bookings given the high demand of course time due to the return of golf in our FAQs;
We also recommend you and your team keep up to date with the Covid restrictions and guidance is place for the dates of your matches Play Safe – England Golf Update
We do have a well-defined process for requests for extensions to the last day of play where the criteria expect the match to have been arranged and postponed a number of times only due to bad weather, and only a very small extension window can be granted all those criteria are met (check our FAQ for the full list of criteria). There is no provision for the lack of players in a team in this process. It’s therefore unlikely to get extensions to the last day of play granted unless all the criteria have been satisfied. Our advice is to plan ahead and have a think about these “what if’s” when arranging and agreeing dates your matches.
When you have agreed your date of play, on the day of the match make sure you have a record of all the players, handicaps and match results, you will need all this information to submit a full result after the match online. Download and print our match scorecards or log in on your smartphone after the last match has concluded and submit your result there an then!.
Also in later rounds make sure your players are eligible to play in your team, check the rules as a player can only represent one active team in the competition at a time, check they meet the age requirement, and in the Gents check they are not playing on a handicap index greater than 20 (a 21+ handicapper can play, but only off and index of 20) and in the ladies, this is no greater index than 30 (but a 31+ handicapper can play but only off and index of 30).
On the whole, we know you as team captains have a great sporting spirit and when arranging matches so they are played on time is plane sailing, but very rarely we know some things don’t go to plan. We are here to help and often find the best course of action to resolve issues is to talk it over with the opposing team captain. The rules provide lots of provision for different options in playing your match, like using the away course if the home course cannot offer reasonable facilities, so please do check them and don’t hesitate to ask for for help and advice around the rules, we have also included some answers in our FAQ pages to help you as well.
There’s a lot of advice here on this post, it is not a mandate from the committee. The committee will always make judgements if required inline with the rules and individual circumstances.