Following on from the October newsletter, we welcome your ideas on ways we can improve the system of score verification:
The effectiveness of the handicap system is based on the integrity and honesty of the golfer; it is a requirement of the handicap system that golfers enter every 18-hole or 9-hole round they play, that can be verified by a fellow player, regardless of where the round was played. If this is adhered to the Handicap System will provide all golfers with an equitable handicap.
We currently have numerous verification facilities built into the Handicap system:
1. Peer review - all scores entered are published on our site for scrutiny, so fellow golfers and competition organisers can view these posts and direct questions to the relevant club handicapper for investigation.
2. "Open Round" - this enables clubs to open rounds on the system for all handicapped golfers playing their courses. The golfer must "close the round" by submitting a score.
3. Club Handicapper – this person manages and oversees all members handicaps and can submit, alter or delete scores from a player’s profile. The Club Handicapper can also amend a player’s handicaps where necessary. These actions are carried out in keeping with provisions contained in the Handicap Manual.
However, additional measures are up for discussion. For example, in a recent dialogue with Club Managers and other role players in the industry, Dale Hayes proposed that the SAGA look at the possibility of scores being verified on the system by a playing competitor or the club ("Cross Verification").
This could be taken a step further with golfers given a "graded handicap" based on the percentage of scores entered on the system that have been "cross verified". Clubs could then decide on what level of handicap grading qualifies for entry into, or can accept prizes, in their competition. This may encourage people to get their scores cross verified by playing partners, either on the handicap terminal. via the cell phone app or on the Internet website.
Or we stick with the USGA system and rely entirely on the golfer’s honesty and the club handicapper.
These are just some of the ideas that have been put forward and we would like to encourage you to submit your views and ideas to us, so that they can be submitted to the SAGA for consideration.
In the meantime we urge all of you to make sure your Club and any those you visit are opening rounds on the system for each member and handicapped visitor, to ensure everyone is entering their scores.