Competition Rules

Procedures and conditions of competitions for all members

1) All competitions must be played in accordance with the R&A Rules of Golf and Sherborne Golf Club local rules in force at the time of the competition.

2) Members are not eligible to win any qualifying competition or enter knock out competitions unless they have a WHS Handicap Index (HI) but may enter a qualifying competition to complete a card towards gaining a Handicap Index (always check competition entry posters).

An initial Handicap Index is achieved by completing 54 holes, made up of any combination of 9 or 18 hole rounds (either qualifying competitions or pre-registered general play cards) prior to the closing date for relevant competition.
See Handicap notice board or club website for details on submitting pre-registered general play cards.

3) All entrants must be fully paid up members of Sherborne Golf Club and
a) 5 day members may enter weekend competitions, if a green fee is paid.
b) FLEX members may not enter or play in knockout competitions, scratch competitions, or any competition where the winner's name will appear on the club honours boards. Neither may FLEX members represent the club in team or other competitions.
c) From 30th March 2024, as a condition of entry to all knockout and honours board competitions players must have completed and submitted 144 holes of qualifying scores in the 12 months preceding the published closing date for entries, of which a minimum of 72 holes MUST be in COMPETITION stroke play (medal or Stableford). The balance may be general play rounds and any combination of 9 and 18 hole qualifying scores is acceptable.
d) From 30th March, 2024, for ALL other competitions there is no minimum number of qualifying holes required to enter. However, in order to be eligible to win the competition, and/or any monetary or other prize associated with it, a player must meet the criteria for qualifying holes specified in rule 3c above.

4) No member may enter a club competition after the published closing date.

5) In all men’s stroke play and knockout competitions, no more than one junior player may enter and play in the same start time and no more than one player with a HI of above 28 may play in the same start time.

6) Providing there is no course ban in place, trolleys may be used in any club competition (unless prohibited by the individual competition’s rules). Motorised buggies of any sort may NOT be used in club competitions other than club Opens, except by players with a permanent disability who have applied for and been granted an exemption to use a buggy in competitions. See the club’s Buggy Policy for full details and the process to follow to obtain an exemption.
If a trolley and/or buggy ban is in force at the start of the competition, then the ban will remain in force throughout the competition for that day.
Caddies may be used at any time, unless prohibited by an individual competition’s rules.

7) The following instances WILL NOT count as a qualifying round for handicap purposes.
a) Cancellation of a competition by the Committee, unless a player’s round has been completed.
b) Any competition where a qualifying course is not available for play in accordance with WHS/CONGU rules.
c) When a player has failed to sign in for a general play round or competition, due to lack of funds or any other reason, unless this is due to a club technical issue.

8) For both Stroke Play and Match Play competitions, in the case of a tie, the following procedure will apply:
a) In the event of a tie for first place in any STROKE PLAY scratch competition; those tied will play a further three extra holes stroke play (14th, 15th & 18th) thereafter – sudden death down 14th, 15th, and 18th holes until a result is achieved.
b) In any other competition for first, second and third place will be decided by a count back over the last 18 holes and then the last 9, 6, 3, 2 and 1 holes, in that order. If a tie still exists, count back will be as above, over the first 9 holes.
c) In a match play competition, any match that is all square on completion of the final hole will continue on a sudden death basis starting at the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and so on until a result is achieved.

9) Golfers with disabilities:
Sherborne Golf Club has adopted the R&A policy and modified rules to enable golfers with disabilities to play in competitions. These can be viewed on the R&A website here and here

10) Any dispute regarding a competition is to be made in writing to the appropriate section committee as soon as possible, and no later than 3 days after the date of the competition.

Stroke Play Competitions

Medals and Stablefords are stroke play competitions; they are scheduled to take place throughout the year.

Competition play will normally be in groups of three players.
Ladies England Golf Medal and Stableford competitions take place throughout the year.

Competitions will generally be split into handicap divisions. These will be specified dependent upon the format and structure of the competition.

1) Winning of any trophy will be dependent on rules and handicap restrictions of the competition (see notices and rule 3 above).

2) Competition booking will generally be available 14 days prior to the date of the competition via the PSI Terminal in the foyer or the SGC Members Hub (SGC/HDID Website or Mobile Phone App), where details of the date, time, format and entry fee will appear.

Competitors must enter their name alongside the tee time they wish to book. Unless otherwise stated, entry to the competition outside booked tee times is permitted.

Generally, the midweek Stableford competitions for men and seniors and the ladies’ weekend/alternate day competitions have no tee closure.

3) Medal, Stableford and knockout competitions must always start from the 1st tee (unless otherwise stated on start sheet).

4) Entry fees for competitions are usually paid at sign in (either using a PSI terminal or Mobile Scoring App) and the fees (e.g. entry fees, sweeps and 2spots) are deducted from the player’s competitions purse. Occasionally fees will be taken on sign up/booking - see each competition notice which will show full conditions of entry and payment.

5) Prior to commencement of play, all competitors must sign in for the competition using either one of the PSI terminals or the Mobile Scoring App/HowDidIDo. Failure to sign in prior to commencement of play will result in the player having neither a score for the competition nor a score for handicap purposes. In team competitions one team member must sign in the team as above.

6) Failure by any entrant to appear who has been allocated a tee time for a competition will result in the forfeiture of any entry fees and may result in the player being excluded from future competitions, as per item 8 below.

7) In accordance with Rule 3.3b of the Rules of Golf, players shall ensure that their gross scores for each hole are correctly marked on their scorecard, and that the card is signed by both the player and marker.

In addition, to assist in the smooth and timely processing of competition results, the Committee requests that the player also marks on the scorecard the following details:

His or her name
The name of their marker
The competition name and the date
Players should also indicate which tee has been used

Score cards must be correctly completed and returned with the scores entered into the computer terminal in the clubhouse foyer or mobile scoring app no later than 23:59 on the day of the competition; the scorecard is to be deposited in the competition box or as directed.

8) Non-compliance with these rules will result in the player receiving a reminder of the requirements. Subsequent instances of non-compliance will result in the suspension of the player from the next competition.

9) Results of competitions and 2spot sweeps will be posted on the notice boards, with details of the prizes awarded.

Knockout Competitions

1) Entry fees for knock out competitions MUST BE PAID by the due date which is generally the closing date for entries. A failure to pay the fee by the due date will result in NO ENTRY.

2) Once the draw has been made and published, any alterations to the draw sheet can only be made by a member of the Competition Committee.

3) Arranging Games
a) It is the responsibility of BOTH players/pairs to arrange a mutually convenient date for the match. Both players/pairs are responsible for offering their opponents at least 3 dates. Players MUST ensure that their contact details are available on the ClubV1 members’ hub to facilitate timely contact. Failure to do so will result in immediate removal from the competition.
b) If one or other of the players/pairs has difficulty in arranging a mutually agreed date, the competition organiser must be contacted. If neither party has contacted the organiser and the play by date has passed, BOTH/ALL PLAYERS WILL BE DISQUALIFIED.
c) There will be no extensions to published dates/times, however the Section Competition Committee reserves the right to extend the published dates/times for the competition as a whole if extenuating circumstances arise.

If you know that you cannot play in the subsequent round, you must, as a courtesy, concede the match. If, having agreed a date to play a match, one player/pair is unable to fulfil the fixture and an alternative date cannot be agreed with their opponent(s), then the player/pair unable to play on the agreed date must concede the match.

Effective 30th March, 2024

Adverse Weather Conditions Policy

Occasionally Sherborne Golf Club will suffer from adverse weather and/or poor visibility. Therefore it is prudent to have an Adverse Weather Policy to ensure that members, visitors and staff alike are kept safe from harm.

It is incumbent on the General Manager, Head Greenkeeper and Management of the club to try to keep the course open for as long as possible, but only when it is safe to do so. This policy sets out the procedures to be followed, including closing the course, during adverse weather conditions such as thunder and lightning, or when fog or mist restricts visibility. It also provides clear instructions when friendly and/or competition golf is scheduled or in progress and there is a course closure.
The benchmark to determine if play can start or continue will be the ability to see the fir trees to the right of the 1st fairway, approximately 200 yards from the 1st tee, and the fairway bunker on the 12th hole from the 12th tee (200 yards). If play is allowed, it is still the responsibility of players not to hit a ball further than where they can see it land.

Competition Golf

The Head Greenkeeper, Deputy Head Greenkeeper, on duty Greenkeeper, General Manager, Competition Organisers and Pro Shop Staff will determine whether or not conditions and visibility are good enough for play to start or continue. On occasion, fog in particular will remain longer than anticipated and therefore communications with the competitors will include the results of an inspection every 15 minutes. If the delay exceeds 1 hour this will prevent all players in the competition being able to start their rounds in the reserved booking period, and the competition will therefore be abandoned. If the fog has lifted and the course is safe to play, enough time will be given to competitors to prepare to play. This period for preparation before play will be no less than 10 minutes.

If fog should descend after the competition has started, the same time scale should be used (a cumulative maximum of 1 hour’s delay). If fog has not cleared within that time the competition will be abandoned. The same criteria should be used to decide whether a competition should be delayed or abandoned in the event of any other weather-related delay (for example, flooding, frozen ground or thunder and lightning). Please be aware that not every possible cause of weather-related delay can be defined here.

Friendly Golf
If no tee reservations are in place, (individuals playing in club competitions such as knockouts take priority) then it may be possible to accommodate all golfers in the remaining daylight hours. It would be the Management’s duty to inform golfers of the total time delay, so they can arrive at the Club at their new appropriate time. If there is a tee reservation, the golfers waiting would have to give way to this tee reservation. The Management would liaise with the organiser of that tee reservation to endeavour to accommodate as many of those golfers waiting to play as possible. However, if this is not possible it may be the case that the waiting golfers will not be able to start. Again, enough time should be given once the fog has lifted players time to prepare to play. This period of preparation will be no less than 10 minutes.

Responsibility of Management/Pro Shop Staff

• to ensure at all times the safety of members, visitors and staff is paramount
• to close the course when visibility prevents seeing 200 yards
• to communicate and update the situation as often as possible with waiting golfers
• to give time intervals when inspections will take place (at least every 15 minutes)
• to allow for a minimum of 10 minutes preparation before starting or restarting
• to restart as soon as possible
• to ensure as many waiting groups get off as near to the order of their original start time as possible
• to liaise with groups that have tee reservations to see if a compromise can be reached over starting times
• to abandon a competition if cumulative delay exceeds 1 hour

Responsibility of Members/Visitors
• to listen to, respect and take notice of instruction by management
• to “make up” as much as possible to ensure the least amount of time is lost
• to be ready to play when asked
• to tell the Pro Shop staff if you are unable to play because of later commitments
• to abandon their game when playing on the course if fog comes down and golfers cannot see the fir trees to the right of the 1st fairway in line with the mound, approximately 200 yards from the 1st tee, the 12th fairway bunker from the 12th tee, or further than 200 yards
• not to attempt to hit the ball further than where they can see it land
• follow instructions and be reasonable if told that you are not able to play.
• to remind golfers of their responsibility whilst on the course
• to update course information telephone message
• to update the information on the club website and ClubV1 members’ hub

Responsibility of Green Staff

• to keep safe at all times and wear appropriate PPE
• to help give instruction to golfers on the course
• to remind golfers of their responsibility whilst on the course
• to update course information telephone message
• to update the information on the club website and ClubV1 members’ hub

Suspension of play
If no one is playing on the course when the decision is made to suspend play a notice will be placed at the Club entrance.
If course conditions or visibility become restrictive or limited on any part of the course, it is the individual responsibility of all golfers to cease play and report the condition as soon as practical to a Club official.

When players are on the course and conditions deteriorate such that in the opinion of an authorised club official play should be suspended, such action will be taken under Rule 5.7 “Stopping Play: Resuming Play”.

The signals used to indicate suspension or resumption of play will be those recommended in Model Local Rule J1, which are as follows:
An immediate suspension of play for a dangerous situation will be signalled by one prolonged note of the siren.
All other suspensions will be signalled by three consecutive notes of the siren.
In either case, resumption of play will be signalled by two short notes of the siren.
Only continue play if you consider it safe to do so.
All golfers must not commence or continue play when the decision to cease play has been made by the Club. Play will only resume when it is considered safe to do so.

Contact Information:
1. Ed Stahl (Head Greenkeeper)
2. Paul Clarkson (Deputy Head Greenkeeper)
3. Steve Johnson(General Manager)
4. Rob Cochran (Men’s Competition Organiser)
5. Sharron McVie (Ladies’ Competition Organiser)
6. Paul Dimishky (Seniors’ Competition Organiser)
7. Pro Shop staff

Updated 6.5.23