1. Clubs must be affiliated to the L&RLCGA.
2. All players to be current members of the County Association, and bona fide members of the club they are representing.
3. All players are required to have a minimum of three qualifying cards recorded on their WHS record in the 12 months prior to each match.
4. A player may not represent more than one club in any scratch league season. It is not necessary for the club to be represented by the same players throughout the competition.
5. There is currently no entry fee for this competition.
Organisation of league
5. The Divisions shall be numbered 1,2,3 etc. At the end of each season the top Club in each division other than Division 1 shall be promoted. The bottom Club in all but the lowest Division shall be relegated. This is subject to there being no circumstances requiring Division restructuring to fulfil the competition's objective to promote scratch golf in the County.
6. Teams in Division 1 and Division 2 to consist of SIX players and teams in Division 3 and below to consist of FIVE players
7. All matches to be played HOME or AWAY in accordance with the fixtures published by the League Committee.
8. If a club cannot field a viable team they must withdraw from the league immediately and will automatically be relegated the following year. All matches they have played will be null and void.
9. Resignations or applications for membership of the Scratch League must be sent to the County Competitions' Secretary by 31st August.
Playing of matches
1. Matches shall consist of six (Divisions 1 and 2) and five (Division 3 and below) games of singles match play, played off scratch, over a stipulated round of eighteen (18) holes. Games finishing all square shall be considered tied.
2. All matches shall be governed by the Rules of Golf plus local rules in operation for the course over which the match is played, excluding any local rule alternative for stroke and distance.
3. Matches to be played on a course with an applicable Slope and Course Rating and no more than one temporary green in play. Every effort should be made to play the course at its measured length as defined by its Course and Slope Rating.
4. Matches to commence no earlier than 5 pm unless a prior agreement has been made between the Clubs.
5. Each team Captain should complete a team sheet with players listed in the correct order of Handicap Index with player 1 being the lowest. This will determine the individual games to be played i.e. player 1 from Club A plays against player 1 from Club B etc.. Any game affected by an infringement of this rule, will be forfeited to the opposing team.
6. Team sheets must be exchanged at least ten minutes prior to the agreed starting time, and after that no substitutes are allowed. Individual games do NOT have to commence in the team sheet order.
7. It is expected that Clubs will declare a full team on the match team sheet. Where this is not possible a minimum of 4 players must be fielded in order to produce a meaningful result in Divisions 1 and 2. A minimum of 3 players must be fielded in Division 3 and below. The players must still be listed in the correct order of Handicap Index with the remaining games being forfeited to the opposition.
8. If any individual player arrives at their starting point more than 30 minutes after the agreed match start time i.e. the first game commences, their individual game shall be forfeited.
9. Results of each match must be sent to the Competitions' Secretary of the League by the winning Club within 7 days, using the special match sheets provided. Drawn matches should be reported by the home Club.
10. All matches should be played on the date set by the County Executive. If a Club is unable to host a match for any reason, they must forfeit the Home advantage and play Away at their opponent's course. Any changes must be put in writing to the County Competitions' Secretary.
11. Once started, if a match cannot be completed due to a) the course becoming unplayable due to water logging (holes under water), b) play is suspended due to threat of lightning and/or c) insufficient light to complete the games, the following shall apply:
(a) If the overall match result is mathematically beyond doubt e.g. in Division 2, three games are already won by Club A and another is dormie, (providing the necessary 3½ points to win the match), then the match should be suspended and a new date(s) agreed to complete any unfinished games. (This is necessary because promotion/relegation at the end of the season may be determined by games won or lost overall). The games will restart at the point where they were suspended. This must be within ten (10) days of the original date. Individual games where originally selected players are unavailable for the rearranged date must be forfeited to the opposition. The requirement to rearrange does not take priority over competitors’ rights under Rule 3.2b (1) Concession of match, hole or next stroke in relation to the original game (ie A player may concede a match at any time prior to the start or conclusion of that match).
If (a) cannot be applied, then team Captains are required to make a mutual decision to:
Suspend the match and arrange a new date(s) to complete any unfinished games. The games will restart at the point where they were suspended. This must be within ten (10) days of the original date. Individual games where originally selected players are unavailable for the rearranged date must be forfeited to the opposition.
Abandon the match entirely and rearrange by mutual consent for another date, ensuring that it is completed by 31st August. In this instance, player selection is at the discretion of each Club and new team sheets shall determine the individual games to be played on the rearranged date.
For guidance, it is recommended that if half or more of the individual games have either ended or completed 12 or more holes, then the match should be suspended. Alternatively, if fewer than half of the individual games have either ended or completed 12 or more holes, then the match should be abandoned. However, the final decision is at the discretion of the Captains.
12. Disputes will normally be settled by the Captains of the teams concerned. Where this proves impossible the dispute shall be referred to the Executive Committee, whose decision shall be final.
13. Motorised “Sit-On” Golf Carts/Buggies may only be used in strict compliance with the County Transportation policy.
Division winners, promotion and relegation
14. The order of Clubs’ finishing positions in each Division will be determined by:
1) Greatest number of points, 2 points are awarded for a win, 1 point for a draw and no points for a loss, then
2) Greatest “games difference” aggregate for all matches, then
3) Greatest “holes difference” aggregate for all matches, then
4) Result between the tied Clubs
15. In the event that the formula above cannot separate teams tied as winners of Division 1 or for promotion/relegation, a play-off will take place on a neutral course as directed by the Competitions Secretary. The play-off will consist of a match of six (Divisions 1 and 2) or five (Division 3 or below) individual games between the Clubs over a round of 18 holes in accordance with the Scratch League rules. In the event of a tied match, the first players listed on the team sheets from each Club shall play a three hole (match play) play-off to determine the winners. If this does not separate the teams, the play-off shall continue on a sudden death basis until the match is decided. Sudden death play-off holes are a continuation of the round.
Scratch League Rules amended January 2024