R&A, USGA working toward creation of world handicap system

R&A, USGA working toward creation of world handicap system

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R&A, USGA working toward creation of world handicap system

One golf handicap system for the entire world? It will likely happen.

The R&A and U.S. Golf Association announced via a release Wednesday that they formed a joint committee that will work toward developing a single golf handicap system, instead of the six that are currently in effect.

Right now, golf handicaps are administered by the USGA, Golf Australia, Argentine Golf Association, South African Golf Association, European Golf Association, and the Council of National Golf Unions in Great Britain and Ireland. These handicap systems are not completely alike, either.

“We have been concerned for some time that many golfers find the handicapping landscape to be complicated and can be frustrated when it is not always applied in the same way in different parts of the world,” said Martin Slumbers, the R&A’s chief executive. “We are working closely with the existing handicapping bodies to benefit from their insights as we try to formulate a system that will be easy to understand and can be applied consistently on a global basis.”

The committee will include representatives from the six handicap administrators, as well as the R&A, Golf Canada and Japan Golf Association. Proposals will be announced later this year.

“With one global system, golf courses will be rated and handicaps calculated in a consistent manner everywhere in the world,” said Mike Davis, the USGA’s executive director. “Removing borders to provide an easy way for all to play together is great for the game and golfers everywhere.”

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