COVID-19 UPDATE: Restrictions easing further from July 1

From 1 July 2020, the NSW State Government has approved the reintroduction of adult and junior sport, including contact sport. As such, the riding of two golfers in a cart will be permissible.

Golf NSW encourages all Golf Clubs to ensure they have a COVID Safety Plan, which will be different at each Club depending upon their clubhouse size and the number of golfers. 

Sports Shorts – COVID 19 UPDATE

Clubs are encouraged to continue to practice social distancing, maintain good hygiene practices and ensure outdoor gatherings of no more than 20 people occur.

Frequently asked Questions:

Can two players both ride in the same golf cart?

Yes. With the State Government’s reintroduction of community sport for adults and children (including contact sport) from July 1, players can share golf carts. Clubs may consider recommending that one player be responsible for the driving duties for the entire round and that the passenger remain on the passenger’s side of the cart.  

Should our Club still be enforcing modified playing conditions?

It is a Club’s decision as to whether they continue the use of the modified playing conditions as a part of their COVID-19 Safety Plan e.g. flags left in, no rakes in bunkers, no swapping of scorecards etc. Please click here for a full list of those modifications.

Should clubs allow rakes in bunkers and removal of the flagstick?

It is recommended that this be done with a gloved hand.

Can we play golf in groups of four? 

Yes. Under current outdoor gathering limits, the play of golf in groups of four is allowed. While additional care needs to be taken to maintain social distancing, golf is also permissible in groups of greater than four and up to twenty, should this be required. For example, groups of six for Foursomes.

Can we play golf as a shotgun start? 

Clubs should continue to minimise gathering opportunities wherever possible and as such, shotgun starts should be avoided unless gatherings of less than 20 people can be achieved.

Can we play golf with caddies? 

Yes. Caddies may be utilised.  Golf NSW recommends that caddies, where practical:
– Maintain social distancing practices
– Maintain good hygiene
– Allow players to pull their own clubs from their bag

Can players swap balls during the play of a hole?

In addition to the other Temporary Modifications to the Rules of Golf, it is permissible to introduce a local rule that allows players to substitute the golf ball during the play of a hole, so that players are not touching each other’s golf ball. For example:

  • When taking a preferred lie
  • When putting

If this local rule is introduced, Clubs must not introduce a penalty for a player hitting their partner’s golf ball. 

Any local rules that are introduced should not be to the detriment of pace of play.

Can I use the course driving range and putting green to practice?

Yes. Provided gathering and social distancing measures are in line with regulations, and the NSW Public Health Order is implemented and enforced. 

A limit on the number of people allowed (a maximum of 20) on the practice putting green, or in the hitting bays at any one time should be communicated via signage and enforced at each location.

It is a Club’s decision as to what extent practice facilities are made available to members and social golfers.

Can we play competition golf?

Yes. There are no conditions/restrictions that prevent the play of competition golf if the Club can implement and enforce gathering and social distancing measures in line with regulations and the NSW Public Health Order.  

Your Club may also utilise two-tee starts if social distancing guidelines can be maintained. Avoid shotgun starts unless these occur in smaller groups, and gatherings of less than 20 people can be achieved.

Can I get a lesson from the Professional at the Club?

Yes. There are no conditions/restrictions that prevent a golfer from having a lesson if the Club/Professional can implement and enforce gathering and social distancing measures in line with regulations and the NSW Public Health Order. Outdoor group lessons with a maximum of 20 people are permitted.

Can the clubhouse serve food and drinks to members?

Yes. Clubs are permitted to serve food and drinks (including alcohol) in designated dining areas, to be consumed while seated.

The maximum capacity for each venue is 1 person for every 4 square metres.

For specific information from Clubs NSW, please click here.

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