Salman Aslam

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Antecedents of golfing rules can be traced to its inception in 1744 at Scotland. Over centuries they have undergone numerous changes. Rules were first crystalized in 1897 by the regulating body Royal & Ancient Golf Club Saint Andrews. With the passage of time rules kept on changing in conformity with dictates of equipment and course parameters. Eventually in 2016 it was decided to modify rules and make them more golfers friendly. USGA in collaboration with R&A decided to get input from all golfing community regarding proposed changes in the offing.

Based on recommendations modifications to rules have been unfurled effective 1st January 2019. Interestingly golf rule book has been slashed from 34 rules to 24. Golf is a game based on impeccable integrity of players. It is self-monitoring/self-umpiring based on etiquettes and good demeanour. It envisages even imposition of self-penalty for infringement of rules. For smooth conduct of game knowledge of rules is of paramount significance. I will be dwelling on the significant rule changes coming into effect for assimilation of all and sundry.

Following are the salient features which will have a pronounced bearing on the conduct of the game:- 
Pakistan Golf Federation and all its associations must apprise the affiliated clubs about the rule changes. Local rules will have to be incorporated in new score cards. Hazards would be designated as penalty areas.

The unkindest cut of all is that knowledge and interpretation of golf rules leaves much to be desired. Resultantly ignorance of rules results in mutual waiver and compromise whose penalty is disqualification. The need of the hour warrants holding rules seminars and awareness drive among golfers to regulate game smoothly. Pool of rules wizards be formed to monitor national and international events. Selected golfers sent to R&A to qualify as International Level Rules Officials.


posted by Salman Aslam @ 11:08 AM,


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