SMGS Local Rules


SMGS Local Rules - Rules Guidance - Expectations . Effective 1/1/2019

 Local Rules; 

These apply to SMGS competitions only, they may not be the local rules of the course.

Anything in dark green is a link and can be clicked on for more detail.

  • PICK & PLACE LOCAL RULE E-3 Is in place all year unless the Captain or committee decide otherwise. Players can mark, lift, clean and replace the ball within a scorecard (no nearer the hole) only when it originally lies in a “Closely mown area”*. When placing please mark the position of your ball with a tee peg or marker before lifting to clean. You may replace the ball within a scorecard of the marker, no nearer the hole. *”Closely mown area” means any part of the golf course that is mowed to fairway height. Therefore, it does not include any rough or putting greens, but may include aprons around the greens or paths mowed through rough. If there is any doubt consult a fellow golfer or play the ball as it lies. Penalty for improper pick and place = 2 strokes. 
  •  Please note  Under the CONGU® Unified Handicapping System scores must not be  submitted for handicap adjustment if this local rule is in place. If you intend to submit a card please notify the committee before you start your round so we can advise you and your marker that you must not use this rule.   
  • "When a players ball has not been found (within 3 minutes) or is known or virtually certain to be out of bounds, the player may proceed as follows rather than proceeding under stroke and distance. For two penalty strokes, the player may take relief by dropping the original ball or another ball in this relief area. These diagrams illustrate the two scenarios   1 BALL NOT FOUND  2 OUT OF BOUNDS  3  BALL NOT FOUND OR OUT OF BOUNDS CLOSE TO GREEN    VIDEO                                                            
  • Full explanation of this local rule can be found here IMPORTANT the player may not use this option to take relief for the original ball when: That ball is known or virtually certain to have come to rest in a penalty area, or The player has played another ball provisionally under penalty of stroke and distance (see Rule 18.3). A player may use this option to take relief for a provisional ball that has not been found or is known or virtually certain to be out of bounds. Penalty for Playing Ball from a Wrong Place in Breach of Local Rule: General Penalty Under Rule 14.7a." 
  • “GIMMIES”:There are no “gimmies” with SMGS, you have to putt the ball into the hole. A “gimmie” awarded by your opponent in match-play must be putted out for the day’s stroke-play comp.


       Rules of golf you should be aware of; The R&A RULES apply at all times when playing with the society. WE EXPECT MEMBERS AND GUESTS TO HAVE A GOOD UNDERSTANDING.

Anything in dark green is a link and can be clicked on for more detail.

  • RULING:  If a player has any doubts as to a ruling during play then he/she should inform their fellow players and proceed to play 2 balls and approach the committee for a ruling at the end of the round. Contrary to rule 20.1c this can be done in SMGS matchplay league games.
  • IMMOVABLE OBSTRUCTION: (Rule 16 Relief from Abnormal Course Conditions (Including Immovable Obstructions) Dangerous Animal Condition, Embedded Ball) They include all roads, paths, drain grills, permanent buildings & their walls, steps, sprinkler heads, well pumps and any protruding parts of a underground pump house. EXCEPTIONS ARE: Out of bounds walls & fences where Rule 19 Unplayable ball applies. Options are;  1. Stroke and distance 2. Line of sight or 3. lateral relief can be taken under penalty of one stroke.  
  • IMBEDDED BALL (Rule 16.3):  A player may take relief with no penalty from a ball which has imbedded itself in its own pitch mark in the General area, except sand. Relief can be taken from the plugged lie, the ball cleaned and dropped, as near as possible to the spot where it lay and no nearer the hole. IMPORTANT: There is no relief when the ball is embedded in sand in a part of the general area that is not cut to fairway height or less, or When interference by anything other than the ball being embedded makes the stroke clearly unreasonable (for example, when a player is unable to make a stroke because of where the ball lies in a bush). Relief is only available from the original imbedded position – If in doubt please follow rule 20.1c 
  • ON THE PUTTING SURFACE:  When on the green, players may repair or simply tap down any pitch marks or stud marks. When a player’s ball lies on the putting green,No Penalty for Accidentally Causing Ball to Move. There is no penalty if the player, opponent or another player in stroke play accidentally moves the player’s ball or ball-marker on the putting green.
    The player must:
    Replace the ball on its original spot (which if not known must be estimated) (see Rule 14.2), or
    Place a ball-marker to mark that original spot.

Expectations on Competition days

  • TIMING:  You are expected to register your attendance at the golf course with the day's organiser at least 45 mins before your tee time.
  • GENERAL PLAY:  Please be on the 1st tee at least 10 mins before your tee time. To avoid slow play please remember – You are playing behind the group in front, NOT in front of the group behind........PLEASE KEEP UP BEHIND THEM.
    A round of golf is meant to be played at a prompt pace.
    Each player should recognise that his or her pace of play is likely to affect how long it will take other players to play their rounds, including both those in the player’s own group and those in following groups.
    Players are encouraged to allow faster groups to play through.
    (1) Pace of Play Recommendations. The player should play at a prompt pace throughout the round, including the time taken to:
    Prepare for and make each stroke,
    Move from one place to another between strokes, and
    Move to the next teeing area after completing a hole.
    A player should prepare in advance for the next stroke and be ready to play when it is his or her turn.
    When it is the player’s turn to play:
    It is recommended that the player make the stroke in no more than 40 seconds after he or she is (or should be) able to play without interference or distraction, and
    The player should usually be able to play more quickly than that and is encouraged to do so.
    (2) Playing Out of Turn to Help Pace of Play. Depending on the form of play, there are times when players may play out of turn to help the pace of play:
    In match play, the players may agree that one of them will play out of turn to save time (see Rule 6.4a).
    In stroke play, players may play “ready golf” in a safe and responsible way (see Rule 6.4b Exception). 
  • LATE CANCELLATION:  If you unexpectedly cannot play and need to cancel, please telephone the number on the website start sheet a.s.a.p.
  • Members who are booked in and fail to turn up without informing anyone on committee will be liable for a small fine( up to a full green fee) to be paid before his/her next game. Persistent no shows may be barred from access to the Time sheet for a stipulated period, by Committee decision.
  • PRESENTATION:  You are expected to stay for the presentation after the game, if you cannot stay please extend your apology to the Captain. Failure to do so could likely jeopardise any prizes which you may have won.
  • A Reminder of a couple of Rules of golf.
  • You cannot improve your lie in any way except when there is pick and placing.
  • On a point of etiquette, before reporting to the 1st tee all players should ensure their mobile devices are in "silent" mode. Their use on the course should be limited to emergencies and/or accentuating circumstances and thought should always be given to playing partners.