The right de­ci­sion

Golf Monthly - - Your View -

Con­grat­u­la­tions to The R&A for its ex­clu­sion of Muir­field from the Open rota. As a sub­scriber to Golf Monthly I al­ways look for­ward to your bi­en­nial Top 100 course rankings. I have al­ways been dis­ap­pointed, how­ever, when men-only cour­ses such as Muir­field, or very ex­clu­sive cour­ses such as Loch Lomond, rank so highly.

Surely a club such as Muir­field must score very badly in both your ‘Fa­cil­i­ties’ and ‘Ex­pe­ri­ence’ scor­ing cri­te­ria, when half the pop­u­la­tion can­not even use the fa­cil­i­ties or have any sort of ex­pe­ri­ence there? Log­i­cally five out of ten must be the max­i­mum score pos­si­ble in those cat­e­gories.

A break­down of the cri­te­ria scores when ar­riv­ing at the Top 100 list would be in­ter­est­ing to see. Si­mon Stokes, Cardiff

Editor’s re­ply:

I have cov­ered the sub­ject of the dis­ap­point­ing re­sult of the mem­ber­ship vote and its dam­ag­ing im­pact on the im­age of the game in the editor’s let­ter (page 10) but it’s im­por­tant to get the facts cor­rect when it comes to ac­ces­si­bil­ity at Muir­field. Lady golfers are very wel­come to play as vis­i­tors on des­ig­nated visi­tor days, it’s only mem­ber­ship that is cur­rently not an op­tion. As such we wouldn’t mark Muir­field down in the rankings on visi­tor ex­pe­ri­ence al­though we do for clubs such as Loch Lomond where unac­com­pa­nied vis­i­tors are not able to play. How­ever, we have had dis­cus­sions in the of­fice about whether or not the vote has taken a lit­tle of the shine off the thrill of vis­it­ing Muir­field. It’ll no doubt be on the agenda when we pub­lish the new Top 100 rankings in December. in the years of my youth. Daly was a neigh­bour of my fam­ily when he won The Open Cham­pi­onship in 1947 and through him I be­came a golf ad­dict, which has lasted a life­time.

I vividly re­call sit­ting in Fred’s shop prior to the 1951 Open at Portrush and be­ing in­structed to watch a “young fella from Tuam who one day will be among the world’s great­est play­ers.”

Fred’s words and proph­esy turned out to be true and I had the pleasure of watch­ing all three play many times.

So it’s farewell to ‘Him­self’, but in the words of Bill El­liott, not in sad­ness but in joy through liv­ing in the same era as three real gen­tle­men. Peter Hughes, Burn­ham

I be­lieve in a dress code. I take pride in my dress code and my game, which I be­lieve breeds in­tegrity. Plus, it re­minds me that I have en­tered a dif­fer­ent en­vi­ron­ment, one which in­volves eti­quette and re­spect to oth­ers. I also think that if stan­dards slip just to get more peo­ple into the game, then the in­tegrity and eti­quette of golf could suf­fer.

Surely there are other means of in­tro­duc­ing young mem­bers, rather than re­duc­ing or elim­i­nat­ing the dress code? Other sports have one too. Tony Capel­ing, South Shields

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