Competition Rules

  1. Introduction

This document outlines guidance and rules for the running of Competitions and Handicaps at New Galloway Golf Club. The competition rules are written down to bring together in one document the way that Club Competitions will be organised and run by the Committee and organised by the Match Secretary in order to ensure consistency in the application of these rules  The document sets out the role of the Committee and Match Secretary and the penalties for any breaches of the rules.  All players must adhere to the competition rules which will lead to a high level of fair play, player etiquette and competitiveness.

  1. Rules
    •   All Competitions will be played according to the Rules of Golf as approved by The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews which take precedence over the following (Club Competition)  rules.
    • Club Competitions will be run in accordance with the Competition Rules-
    • All local rules are those applicable to New Galloway Golf Course and will be approved by the Committee of New Galloway Golf Club
    • All rules will be applied with fairness and the Committees decision will be final. In making any decision the Committee and Match Secretary will endeavour to be consistent and ensure fairness to all competitors.

2.5These rules supersede all previous rules of the New Galloway Golf Club and future changes will be made as amendments to this document following approval of the full Committee of New Galloway Golf Club.

  • Starting – All competitors will commence play from the first tee unless notified by the Match Secretary that they should start elsewhere.
  • Teeing Ground – All competitions will be played off the white medal tees unless otherwise stated (players may only play from medal tees in competitions approved by the Committee and/or the Match Secretary) The Match Secretary will note which tees will be used for each competition on the entry sheet.
  • Time of Starting – Players will tee off at the time indicated on the draw sheet. The Match Secretary may permit a player/s to change their tee off time dependant on the reason for the change & the practicality of adjusting the main draw. Competitors who arrive late for their tee off time will be penalised in accordance with “Rule 33-1 & 33-7”, 2 strokes at the first hole in stroke play or loss of first hole in match play


  1. Entry & Draw Procedure
    • Each competitor should enter their name on the entry sheet provided. Players may also enter by e-mailing the Match Secretary at least 48 hours prior to the competition.
    • The draw will be made by the Match Secretary or a member of the Committee on the date notified on the entry sheet
    • Where a draw is made before the day of the competition, it will be posted on the notice board in the clubhouse.
    • No alteration to any draw may be made without the agreement of the Match Secretary
    • Late entries will be approved by the Match Secretary or the member of the Committee organising the competition on the day and will only be allowed where it is practical to accommodate them without detriment to competitors who have made their entry on time.
    • Competitors who cannot make their entry time must notify the Match Secretary or a member of the Committee. Members who persistently fail to turn up for competitions that they have entered for may be banned for a minimum of 2 weeks or longer as decided by the Committee
    • In competitions where there is a draw for partners, no late entries will be allowed.
    • Where entry to the competition is to be made on the day of the competition, when they arrive the competitors will complete the draw sheet entering the information as requested and put their entry money into the competition box (Clearly Marked) and make out a card showing the “Date, the competition, their name & handicap”.
    • The draw will be made by the Match Secretary or a Member of the Committee at the time notified on the entry sheet. This will be done by mixing up the score cards and drawing out the required number of cards.
    • The Match Secretary or Member of the Committee in the Match Secretary’s absence is empowered to adjust the draw to allow members to tee off first in order to facilitate the opening of the bar and the administration of the competition and for other bona fide reasons accepted by the Match Secretary.
    • Where there is a running draw the competitor will enter their name on the draw sheet as and when they arrive. The first 6 names on the entry sheet will be drawn at the time notified on the entry sheet then subsequent draws will be made taking succeeding groups of 6 except at the last draw which will be drawn according to the amount of players waiting to start. This is to ensure that all players wishing to play are able to do so
    • Where players for whatever reason do not wish to enter the main draw for the Monthly Medal & Presidents Putter, they may not tee off within the ½ hour prior to the main draw start time and for the Summer & Winter League 1 hour prior to main draw. Players who play in the morning should ensure that they do not interfere with those who have entered the 12 o’clock draw.  Due to bad weather or other good reason those playing in the morning finish their 9 holes as the players are starting from the 12 o’clock draw it will be courtesy to alternate on the first tee.
    • Where players play outside the main draw they should, where possible, make a draw between the players present and waiting for a partner when they turn up to play.
    • Where it is considered by the Match Secretary or in his absence a Member of the Committee that there may be a shortage of light for the field to complete their game the start of play may be advanced by 15 minutes.
    • Singles Competitions should, where possible, be played in 3 balls. In the case of an all day tee off, players arriving together may elect to play in a 4 ball provided that they do not leave a player wishing to play waiting for a partner and that they give way to 2 & 3 ball matches.
    • Where there are two 2 ball matches left at the end of the draw the players may elect to play in a 4 ball providing they do not hold up other competitors.
  2. Knockout Competitions   
    • In order to ensure that all ties are played on time it is the responsibility of the first named player to contact the opponent offering them  3 dates one of which will be a weekend, all before the date indicated when the round should be played by. The player receiving the challenge should either accept one of these dates or provide a further 3 one of which should be a weekend, all before the date indicated when the round should be played by.
    • Unless both players agree, a minimum of 1 week’s notice should be given
    • Where players are unable to make an arrangement to play between themselves, they will notify the Match Secretary who will set out a date for the tie to be played
    • Where a tie is not played by the due date, the Match Secretary will decide the tie by the toss of a coin unless in the Match Secretary’s opinion the tie has not been played because of the actions of one of the players. In these circumstances the tie will awarded to the other player
    • The Match Secretary may at his discretion give a limited extension for the tie to be played, however in these circumstances the Match Secretary will set a time limit of not more than 7 days for the tie to be played.
    • All ties will be played over the New Galloway Course.
    • Before starting players should agree the procedure should there be a tie at the end of 18 holes. The choices are:
  3. To continue from the first tee until one player wins a hole.
  4. To play a further 18 holes at a later date provided it does not hold up the next round of the competition.
  5. To toss a coin if neither of the above can be achieved.
    • Where a match ends “All Square” the match should be decided as above. In (a) above the match will continue from the first tee and strokes will be given as in the stipulated round except where both players agree to discontinue in accordance with Rule 6-8, or 1 player considers the light too bad to continue.
  6. Pace of Play – A 3 ball match should complete their round in 3 hours 20 minutes. Players who take more than 3 hours 40 minutes to complete their round may be penalized in accordance with the rules of golf after consideration by the Match Secretary and 2 other members of the Committee.
  7. Suspension of Play
    • Players may discontinue play due to Dangerous Conditions in accordance with rule 6-8b.
    • It is the responsibility of players to ensure that they have sufficient time to complete their round before darkness. Entry fees will not be refunded if players allow insufficient time to complete their rounds.
    • Where the competition is a mid-day tee off and the competitors are unable to complete their round by 7pm, the competition will be declared null and void and all entry fees will be refunded and the competition will be re-scheduled.
    • Any Summer/Winter League competition which is cancelled because of poor weather or where there are fewer than five competitors will be declared null and void and will not be re-played. In these circumstances competitors who had already played will be refunded their entry fee
  8. Course maintenance/New Hole – Competitors must accept the condition of the course as they find it and may not suspend play because of greenkeeping work being carried out during their round. This includes the cutting of greens and new holes.
  9. Practise Practise is allowed on the practise area between the 3rd & 5th fairways and the practise putting green.  Competitors may not practise on the course on the day of a stroke play competition.
  10. Tied Competitions

9.1 Ties in stroke play competitions will be decided on the best card over the inward half, the last 9, 6, 3 or last hole, handicaps will be applied proportionately. If this does not provide a clear winner the last 12 & 15 holes will be similarly used to decide. Where the competition is played over 15 holes the best score over the last 7, 6, 3 holes or last hole will be used to decide

  • Ties in the MacMillan, Brown, Shepley Cup & Duguid Trophy will be decided by a play off over 18 holes. The play off will be arranged within 2 weeks of the playing of the competition. In the event of a further tie sudden death will be used to  decide the result with strokes taken in handicap events in accordance with the stroke index of the course.
  • Handicaps
    • It is the individual players responsibility to ensure that they play of the

       correct handicap in any competition.

  • Adjustments to handicaps will be made in accordance with the SGU CONGU

       handicapping system.

  • All Individual Strokeplay Competitions played over a measured course will be

      Qualifying Competitions.

  • All cards for Qualifying Competitions MUST be posted in the Competition


  • A member obtains a handicap by presenting a handicap certificate from

       another club or by posting 3 cards signed by another member into the

      Competition Box, evidence of a reasonable standard of golf is expected prior

      to being given a handicap.

  • Members with prior golfing experience are expected to inform the Club

       Secretary of this prior to being allocated a handicap. New members should

       present a handicap certificate

  • The Match Secretary will update the handicaps of players as soon as possible

       after any competition and post them in the clubhouse, on the Master

       Scoreboard so that members have

       every opportunity to ensure they are aware of their current handicap prior to

       playing any competition.

  • All players who begin play in any singles stroke play competition will be

       subject to handicap revision.

  • The Congu Unified Handicap System will be adhered to as regards adjustment

         of handicaps.

  • The Committee will carry out a review of handicaps in February under clause


  • Members must complete at least 3 stroke play rounds during the year in

     order to retain their playing handicap. Any member losing their playing

     handicap will be required to submit a further three cards in order to have their

     handicap reinstated

  • Handicap allowances for match play competitions will be:
    • Singles – Full Difference
    • Fourball Betterball – ¾ of the difference of the lowest Handicap player will be allowed to each player
    • Foursomes – ½ the difference of the aggregate of the 2 players.
    • Club Championship & Captain’s Championship – Ties will be played off scratch.
  • Officials – The Match Secretary or a member of the Committee will endeavour to be present for the official start time of any competition and is empowered to decide on any problems which may arise such as, starting times, provision of markers or handicaps.
  • Closing the Course – The Greenkeeper is empowered by Committee to close the course where weather conditions or health and safety issues require. When the Greenkeeper is not present the Greens Convenor will take responsibility for this issue. Should neither the Greenkeeper not the Greens Convenor be present any member of the Committee will take this responsibility
  • Decision on the Rules
    • Only the Match Secretary or a member of the Committee may give a decision

       on a rules matter.

  • In competitions of more than 1 round, competitors must obtain a decision on

       any rules or doubt arising from the previous round from the Match Secretary

       or member of the Committee.

  • The Committee will where there is no clear precedent in the “Decisions on the Rules of Golf”  or Competition Rules    obtain guidance from appropriate sources.
  • Score Cards & Stroke Index – The responsibilities of the Committee, Marker (who is normally a fellow competitor) & Competitor are as follows:


  • To maintain the stroke index table
  • To check all competitors submitted score cards for accuracy
  • To provide each competitor entered into an open competition with a score

       card showing the date of the competition, the competitors name, & handicap

         provided by the competitor.




  • A competitor will not be penalized for returning a wrongly totalled scorecard where they have recorded the correct score at each hole or has wrongly subtracted the correct handicap for which they are entitled to play off.
  • In Stableford competitions, it is the Committees responsibility to compute the points scored at each hole.
  • In a Bogey competition a competitor cannot be penalized for showing a wrong result against a hole for which they have correctly recorded their score


  • To check the score with the competitor for each hole (Rule6-6a), including any penalty strokes.
  • To record the gross score taken by the competitor for each hole (preferably as soon as the hole is completed)
  • To sign the score card and hand it to the competitor on completion of the round.


  • In club competitions make out their own card showing, the competition, the date, their name & correct handicap (Rule 6-2b)
  • To check his score for each hole (Rule 6-6b)
  • To settle any doubtful scores with the Match Secretary prior to handing in the card or where this is not possible providing a note of the problem with the score card when placing the card in the returns box (Rule 6-6b)
  • To ensure that they & their marker have signed the card and that the card is returned to either the Match Secretary or into the returns box prior to leaving the course(Rule 6-6b)
  • In a Fourball stroke play competition to ensure that the gross score which counts is correctly recorded on the card (Rule 31-3)
  • Before starting a match in a handicap competition both competitors should ascertain the handicap of their opponent


  • It is immaterial where the card is checked
  • The fact that the marker and competitor have signed the card will be indication that the card has been checked in accordance with the rules
  • Should the card be signed in the wrong place this will not invalidate the card
  • The competitor is liable for disqualification for any breach of rule 6-6h, the wording of which is designed to impress upon the competitor their responsibility for ensuring the correctness of the card they return properly signed and countersigned
  • The Committee have the power (Rule 33-7) to waive or modify a penalty of disqualification, but this power may only be used in exceptional circumstances and should not be used in cases where the competitor has been careless or negligent
  • The competitor’s duty to return their card “as soon as possible” (Rule 6-6b) should be interpreted reasonably. Since no alterations may be made after the card has been returned (Rule 6-6c) the competitor must be allowed sufficient time to check their card carefully. It is the responsibility of the Committee to decide whether any delay in returning the card was reasonable or not
  1. Distance Measuring Devices (Rule 14-3)

The use of distance measuring devices (DMD’s) is permitted in all New Galloway Golf Club competitions.(see note to Rule14-3 and Appendix 1: Part B: Section 9) page 136 Rules of Golf)  They must measure distance only.  Features that would render use of the device contrary to the local rule include, but are not limited to:

  1. The gauging or measuring of slope
  2. The gauging or measuring of anything that might affect play (e.g. wind speed, directions or other climate based information such as temperature, humidity etc)
  3. Recommendations that might assist the player in making a stroke or in his play (eg. Club selection, type of shot to be played, green reading or any other relevant matter) or
  4. Calculating the effective distance between two points based on slope or other conditions affecting shot distance.

Such non conforming features render use of the device contrary to the Rules, irrespective of whether or not:

  1. The features can be switched off or disengaged
  2. The features are switched off or disengaged

A multifunctional device, such as a smart phone or PDA, may be used as a distance measuring device provided it contains a distance measuring application that meets all of the above limitations. (i.e. must measure distance only)  In addition, when the distance measuring application is being used, there must be no other features or applications installed on the device that, would be in breach of the Rules, whether or not they are actually used.

PENALTY for breach of DMD local rule, disqualification

PENALTY for breach of local rules:- match play – loss of hole: stroke play – 2 strokes.