Home Course Advantage


In professional sports be it hockey, baseball, football or basket ball reference is often made to the importance of ‘home field advantage’.

Professional golf is somewhat different in that it is not a team sport (other than conditions such as the Ryder Cup and the Presidents Cup), it is largely an individual sport and no one player has a distinct home field advantage from week to week.

That got me to thinking about the importance of home course advantage in Leagues such as  the Central Senior Putter League.

I did a breakdown of the the number of times the home team won, lost or the matches were tied since 2016 when I became the League Statistician.  Here are the results as they relate to the home team:

Won Lost Tie
2016 63% 35% 2%
2017 63% 29% 8%
2018 71% 29% 0

*2018 after 5 weeks

I would appear that in this League at least, the home team does have a distinct advantage.




MGA and Golf Canada 2018 Competitive Schedule


Date Event Venue Information,
Pairings & Results
May 26 & 27 Match Play Championship Qualifier Winkler G C Info
May 29 Alternate Shot Championsip Southwood G & C C Info
June 2 & 3 
June 4, 7, 8, 9 & 10
Match Play Championship
Teulon G & C C
Pine Ridge G C
June 15 – 17 Future Links, driven by Acura Prairie Championship Portage G C Info
June 18 OR
June 24
Men’s Amateur Championship Qualifier Bel Acres G & C C
Neepawa G & C C
June 23 & 24 Women’s City & District Championship St. Boniface G C Info
July 3 – 5 Women’s Amateur Championship Falcon Lake G C Info
July 3 – 5 Men’s Mid – Amateur Championship Falcon Lake G C Info
July 9 & 10*
July 12 & 13*
Men’s Junior Championship Breezy Bend C C
St. Charles C C
July 10*
July 12 & 13*
Women’s Junior Championship Breezy Bend C C
St. Charles C C
July 16 & 17
July 18 & 19
Nott Autocorp Men’s Amateur Championship Quarry Oaks
Glendale G & C C
July 23 – 25 Men’s Senior Championship Carman G & C C Info
July 23 – 25 Women’s Senior Championship Carman G & C C Info
August 8 & 9 Bantam Championship The Players Course Info
August 11 & 12 Rural Championship Shilo C C Info
August 13 The Players Cup – Qualifer Pine Ridge Golf Club Info
August 21 Women’s Interclub A Championship Selkirk G & C C Info
August 24 Men’s Provincial Interclub Championship Minnewasta G & C C Info
August 27 Men’s Junior Interclub Championship Transcona G C Info
August 30 Women’s Interclub B Championship Transcona G C Info
September 7 Men’s Senior Interclub Championship Neepawa G & C C Info

*The Junior Boys Championship will be held Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and the Junior Girls will be Tuesday, Thursday and Friday*


Date Event Venue
May 29 – June 1 Canadian University/College Championship Chilliwack G C, Chilliwack BC
June 15 – 17 Future Links driven by Acura Prairie Championship
Portage G C, Portage la Prairie MB
July 24 – 27 Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship Marine Drive G C, Vancouver BC
July 30 – August 2 Canadian Junior Boy’s Championship Medicine Hat G & C C, Medicine Hat AB
July 31 – August 3 Canadian Junior Girl’s Championship Beach Grove G C, Tsawwassen BC
August 6 – 9 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship Duncan Meadows G C &
Pheasant Glen Golf Resort, Duncan/Qualicum Beach BC
August 21 – 24 Canadian Men’s Mid – Amateur Championship Victoria G C, Victoria BC
August 28 – 30 Canadian Women’s Senior Championship Lookout Point C C, Fonthill ON
September 4 – 7 Canadian Men’s Senior Championship Gowan Brae G & C C, Bathurst NB

Proposed Rule Changes (2019)


Everyone who plays golf is affected to some degree by the official Rules of Golf.

Tour players live or die by the rules and will call penalties on themselves to their own detriment.  Instead of arguing with officials even when they know the official is right (as is so common in other professional sports), professional golfers police themselves.

But what about amateurs?

I’ve played with groups of players at different clubs who play by some pretty lax interpretation of the rules.  For example,  if you hit a ball into the tall fescue, play it as if you had hit your ball in a  hazard.  If you land in a divot in the fairway, just nudge it out and give yourself a decent lie.  If it’s ‘within the leather’, it’s a gimme.  I played with one group where the gimme’s were getting so long that the group organizers put a piece of black electrical tape on each player’s putter to establish what was ‘within the leather’.

Some groups essentially play ‘winter rules’ or lift clean and place throughout the season. The justification used is that tour pros who play on perfectly manicured courses would never be put in a postion where they would have to play off the lies that we mere mortals routinely encounter.  Then there is ‘Mr. I’ve never encountered a lie that can’t be improved’.   I’ve played with golfers who almost on every shot  lift the ball to ostensibly ‘identify’ it.  Invariably, once replaced,  the ball which had formerly been buried deep in the rough is now perched on a nice clump of grass with the back of the ball cleanly exposed.

So, for a lot of  amateurs, unless you play competitive golf, the rules as they exist are not really that restrictive and the proposed rules changes will not have much effect.

A few of the proposed changes however will allow you to do things that under the existing rules even the most wayward golfer could not do without blushing.

Here is a link to a complete list of the proposed changes.

Here is link to videos that explain the proposed rule changes.

Many of the rules changes will be applauded by professional players as the proposed changes tend to reduce ambiguity and eliminate some of the ‘silliness’ from the game.

Amateurs, I suspect, will embrace the changes that favour them and continue to ignore or disregard those they see as ‘silly’.

The proposed changes will go into effect in 2019.