East Lothian Ladies County Golf Association

Terms of Competitions

(last updated November 2021)

Download: Terms-of-Competition


  1. Eligibility

Competitions are open to all ELLCGA members with amateur status and in possession of a WHS Handicap Index. Members with a Handicap Index of 36.1 to 54.0  may play in any competition, but for the purposes of competitive play will be restricted to a Handicap Index of 36.0. The 2022 Rules of Golf will apply to all competitions.


  1. Entry Requirements and Dates

Members shall enter competitions, and pay the relevant entry fee, on-line via the relevant ELLCGA web page.  Booking must be made by the closing date.  Subject to the agreement of the Committee, late entries may be accepted if there are spaces on the start sheet.

The start sheet will be published on the ELLCGA website soon after the closing date.  The Committee reserve the right to amend a tee time booked online if necessary e.g. to make proper use of the times available and avoid unnecessary gaps in the order of play.  If a tee time is changed the player will be notified individually.  Tee times cannot be altered without the Committee’s authority.  Rule 5 applies to start times.

Refunds will only be payable on withdrawals made before the closing date, and will be paid after the closing date to the members Scottish Golf Account.

In the event that a competition is over-subscribed, a waiting list will be drawn up in application date order.


  1. Format

The format of ELLCGA competitions is as follows:

Spring Meeting: individual strokeplay.  95% course handicap allowance.

See Additional Terms for the County Championship and Handicap Quaich matchplay.

Commonwealth Spoons: foursomes stroke play.  50% of combined team course handicaps.

See Additional Terms for qualification for the Scottish Commonwealth Spoons event.

Summer Meeting: individual stroke play, 95% course handicap allowance.

Autumn Meeting: individual stableford.   95% course handicap allowance.

See Additional Terms for the Catriona Matthew Team Trophy

Summer Hole and Hole: individual match play.   100% course handicap allowance.

Winter Hole and Hole: foursomes match play.  50% of combined course handicap allowance.

See Additional Terms of Competition Matchplay.


  1. Return of Scores

Scores shall be returned as directed by the Committee for each event.


  1. How Ties will be Decided

In match play, in accordance with Rule 3.2a, the match is extended one hole at a time until there is a winner.  In a handicap match, the stroke index allocation as set by the Committee should be used to determine where strokes should be given or received.

In stroke play competitions, scorecard countback will be used to determine placing, based on the best back nine, best back six, best back three or 18th hole.  If there is still a tie, the last six holes, three holes and final hole of the first nine holes will be used.


  1. Caddies

In accordance with Rule 10.3, caddies are permitted.  However it is not permitted to have a professional or assistant professional golfer, or a paid caddy.


  1. Transportation Policy

Players must not ride on any form of transportation during the round unless authorised by the Committee.  See https://www.ellgolf.co.uk/competition-rules/transportation-policy/.


  1. Suspension or Abandonment of Play

The Committee has the right to suspend or abandon play in the event that the course becomes unplayable or dangerous.  If play is suspended Rule 5.7 will apply.


  1. Dispute

In the event of any dispute, the Committee’s decision shall be final.


Additional Terms of Competition

County Championship and Handicap Quaich

One qualifying round of stroke play shall be played at the Spring Meeting. Competitors will be asked to indicate their availability for the match play rounds. From those available, the 16 competitors returning the lowest scratch scores shall qualify for match play to compete for the County Championship. The 8 competitors, thereafter, returning the lowest nett scores shall qualify for match play to compete for the Handicap Quaich. Ties for the last qualifying places shall be resolved by a card countback (including handicap for the Quaich) over the last 9, 6, 3, 1 hole(s). If a tie still arises, the last 6, 3, 1 of the first 9 holes shall be used. If a tie still arises a sudden-death play-off shall take place immediately before the commencement of the first match play round. The match play draws will be as follows, based on the qualifying scores: 1 vs 16; 2 vs 15; 3 vs 14 (etc). Each match, including the finals, will be on a knock-out basis decided over 18 holes singles match-play. If the match is all square after 18 holes, play continues from the 1st tee until a hole is won on a “sudden death” basis. Championship draw matches will be played off scratch whereas matches in the Handicap Quaich draw are played off handicap with the stroke allowance being full difference between the handicaps where extra holes are required strokes should be taken as in a full round.


Commonwealth Spoons

The Commonwealth Spoons Competition for Spoons donated by the Australian Ladies’ Golf Union shall be played annually in aid of the Scottish International Match Fund.

One round of stroke play foursomes on course handicaps shall be played at County level, the top qualifiers from each County going forward to the Final at the end of the season. From each County the number of qualifiers shall be limited to one pair in each ten entering, a balance of five or more counting as ten. If any of the top pairs from a County qualifier are unavailable for the final, additional pair(s) may be substituted to use the allocated number of spaces. The final shall consist of one round of stroke play on handicap. Ties in all stages of the competition shall be decided by a card countback over the last 9, 6, 3 or 1 hole(s). If a tie still arises, the last 6 holes of the first 9 holes (or 3 or 1) will be used. If still a tie, the Trophy shall be held for an equal period of time and final place(s) shall be shared. The pair returning the best score on handicap in the Final shall hold the Australian Spoons for one year.


Catriona Matthew Team Trophy

The Trophy will be played for at the ELLCGA Autumn Meeting annually.   The teams will be made up of ELLCGA members who have entered the meeting.

The Committee will advise Club Captains of those who have entered the meeting. If the Club Captain is not a member of ELLCGA, then a player who has entered will be informed.  ELLCGA may suggest they could find more players to encourage full participation in their teams.  Teams need to be confirmed to the ELLCGA Secretary before any scores are posted.

Each Club may enter a maximum of 2 teams. Teams will comprise of three members from the same club who have entered the competition. Two of the best scores will add together to count for the team score.  The team with the highest two combined stableford scores on the day will win the trophy.  Nominated team players do not have to play together.

If any team player is ill or cancels, clubs may substitute a player into the team before the first score is posted.  If they do not have a third player the two players scores will count. ELLCGA will manage this at the competition desk.

Clubs are encouraged to select Juniors to be part of the Club teams. Should there be 3 or 6 juniors who have entered the event, are members of the ELLCGA Junior membership, and have not been selected by their club, they may form an ELLCGA team and enter as one or two teams. This team will be managed by the Committee.

In the event of a tie.  The last 3, then 6, then 9 holes will be taken into consideration.  If there is still a tie all the way back to the 1st hole, then the third player’s score will be added to the totals and the same process applied if tied again.


Additional Terms of Competition Matchplay

for the Summer Hole and Hole Matchplay and Winter Foursomes Matchplay

There is no entry fee for this competition.  Each round will be on a knock-out basis decided over 18 holes singles or foursomes match play, off course handicaps current at the time of play (50% of combined course handicaps for foursomes).  If the match is tied after 18 holes, play continues from the first tee until a hole is won on a ‘sudden death’ basis, strokes being taken as in a full round.

Full handicap difference will be applied.  It is the players’ responsibility to check respective course handicaps and the shot allowance prior to teeing off.

The draw will be published on the ELLCGA website prior to the start of the first round.  The final day for playing each round will be a Sunday.  The first-named is the challenger and has the choice of course.  She should contact her opponent as soon as possible and offer three dates, one of which must be a weekend and one of which must be a weekday, and the dates must not all be in the same week.  If a challenger fails to offer three dates, the challenged will proceed to the next round.  In the spirit of the game, it would also be acceptable for the challenged to contact the challenger in the absence of a challenge at the beginning of the period allocated for that round.

If opponents cannot agree on a match date within the time for a round to be played, this will normally result in both parties being disqualified from the competition.  If a player is unable to fulfil the match obligations for any round, the match must be conceded as soon as the question of unavailability arises.  No extensions of time will be given except in the event of course closures.  The amended date will be advised by the Committee Member responsible for the competition.

The challenger has the responsibility to ensure that the course is fit for play and must inform her opponent of any local rules.  If the challenger’s course is closed on match day, and a future alternative date cannot be agreed within the time limits of the round, then play may switch to the opponent’s course, if available on the day, in order to get the tie played.