Geoff Witton casts his eye over what is going on this month.
Kevin Norquay has written about golf around the country. The headline was:
Golf” In a hole? Modern-life pressures force golf clubs to adapt to avoid financial hazards.
The article goes on in some length to discuss the changing social nature of how we, as a society, conduct and manage our lifestyles. The article also climbs on to the currently fashionable topic of using golf course land for housing stock. The article then discusses closures and changes and finishes with statements that conclude that Golf is maybe dying.
There is no doubt golf is changing. The market is changing, the club environment is maturing and becoming more sophisticated and social patterns have changed. The breakdown of the separation of female and male players at club level is well advanced. Courses do close for a myriad of reasons, some economic – some by evolvement. At the same time new courses are being built!! They do not get built on a whim anymore. There has to be a number of compelling business and financial plans agreed to by all the stakeholders before the first sod is turned.
However, woe betide the club and its members who do not recognise the shift in times. New Zealand Golf is pouring a significant percentage of its finite resources into supporting clubs in their development, and so often we hear of clubs who choose to ignore their advice.
Kevin Norquay's and other articles on this subject are by necessity simplistic in their approach, probably for editorial reasons. Most Golf Clubs and certainly NZ Golf and its Board are acutely aware of the issues facing the sport. Plus they are acting on them.
There can be no argument that club membership, in its traditional form is on the decline. What has NOT been officially recognised until recently is the huge increase in casual/social golfers across all forms of golf categories. This lends further arguments to the school of thought that golf is changing and overall is in a good space.
Time stands still for no man (or Club!) Isn’t Ben Campbell growing! If he can just get over his injury problems this guy could become really good. We also hope Ryan Fox’s golf continues to head in an upward direction, but he is quite a way ahead of Ben at this stage. We will be keeping an eye on both of them.
The 2019 NZ PGA Championship has been now officially announced for the first week of March next summer. Pegasus is a beautiful and challenging course that will present well to the event. Our international visitors will enjoy their visit.
The answer to the question “Will Tiger win another major in 2018” is well answered. However, we must look beyond that and look at the trend. He is getting better and better each outing. He is fitter, that means he is not fading as much towards the end of the 3rd and 4th days, and he is steadier off the tee box.
The real question is “Will Tiger win another major in 2019”. This time the answer is maybe he just might. If he can manage his back properly the fire and intent is definitely still there. Enjoy this magazine
Pegasus Golf & Sports Club.