Net Match Play Competition

I played my first match play last week and things did not go as I had hoped. It was a great match and my competitor Rich was fun to get to know. We met up on Monday morning and the course was wet, but the weather was perfect for playing golf. As we walked down to the first tee, we discussed handicaps and as a result; I had to give him 11 strokes.

I am playing to a 5 and Rich is playing to a 16. I needed to play my best in order to walk away with a win. After our first drives, I knew I was going to play a tough match. Rich was not long, but he was very straight. He was never in trouble and his short game was excellent. The real challenge for me was giving up 11 strokes.

Rich’s short game was very good and his putter was hot. He was never in trouble and did not make many mistakes. Now before you raise your eyebrow thinking that Rich was playing better than a 16 handicap, he was; but not that much better. At the end of the match he was only 3 strokes better than his handicap and on any given day, this is absolutely possible.

As for me, I played okay. I took advantage of most holes that I need to and I was in the match until the 13th hole. I hit a very poor shot and doubled the hole. Then I did the same thing on 14. As a final result, I was closed out. Instead of being down 1 with 3 to go, I lost 5 and 4. I ended up playing 3 strokes above my handicap.

Well, it was my first match play event in some years. I learned some things, but the best part of the experience was meeting Rich. We had a great time talking and playing a friendly round of golf. This is really what playing in these friendly events are all about. Meeting new golfers and enjoying our time on the course.

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

10 thoughts on “Net Match Play Competition

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  2. Pingback: Are You Open to Suggestions | The Grateful Golfer

  3. Hey Jim,

    I have had similar experiences at my club playing some net match play. It is certainly tough giving away that many strokes, usually the low handicap has to play to their handicap or better to win. It’s not a perfect system but it still allows us all to go out and compete amongst each other. I do prefer gross match play so I tend to stick to those when I can. Playing these matches is a good way to get to know people at your club though!


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  4. A hot putter is tough to overcome all by itself. And giving up 11 strokes to someone who’s putter is hot has to be really tough to deal with. Judging from the final score though I’d say you did a fine job.
    I managed a little better yesterday because I was the one with the hot putter. The guy I joined on the first tee had already played nine, and was decidedly longer off the tee, but I only needed 12 putts to get through the 9 and I got a couple of good breaks on what were actually poor tee shots that I was able to take advantage of. Those two things allowed me to win the 9 by 2 strokes even though I doubled #9 to end at 3 over.
    I followed that 9 with a 1 over on the back. My putter was not quite as hot as it was earlier. One three putt, and one lip out 10 foot birdie attempt kept me from my best score ever. But I came away excited about the progress my game is seeing. I am a grateful golfer.

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  5. Jim, ouch! Sounds like Rich has all the tools you need for a full-handicap event. Gets a lot of strokes, keeps it in play, and good short game. What is your overall view of this format? If I’m on the tee facing such an opponent, I feel like I’m behind before the first ball is struck.

    At a club I played out of when I was young, they’d run our match play club championship and flight you by handicap. So the championship flight was 0-7, first flight 8-14 etc. Then you’d play whoever you drew straight up. Not perfect but definitely avoided most sandbagging scenarios.

    Not saying your opponent was a sandbagger but spotting that many strokes sounds tough.

    Good luck in the next one. Thanks!


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    • Brian

      The format was fine. If I shot my handicap, I actually had a very good chance to win. Rich played a bit better that day and that was the difference. I am in a gross match play event as well. That is more akin to my game. Should play that match soon. Rich played very well and although he played to a 13 handicap when we played, his stroke indicates he could have a few blow up holes. Just did not happen during the match.

      During a handicap match play event. The advantage goes to the 8 to 14 handicapper. Could should well and gets strokes.

      It is all good at this end. I had a great time and look forward to playing another round with Rich.


      Liked by 1 person

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