Over the past twenty months, Section leadership has been gaining an understanding of the barriers to members being engaged. As you can imagine, with over 1,400 members there are lots of different reasons. However, the two most consistent reasons are time and money. Equipped with this information, we have become very focused on asking two key questions when reviewing programs, how can we… create value for the fees charged and minimize time away from work/family.
Following this strategy, the Tournament Committee is reviewing entry fees, value adds, and number of competition days. Accordingly, a concept for the match play has evolved, and we believe it can increase the number of participants, decrease entry fee, and minimize travel, time away from work and family. Please review the concept and FAQ below. Afterward, please give us your feedback via the feedback survey. If you have additional questions or more lengthy comments, please reach out to your Chapter Tournament Chair, or as always you can contact me.
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Progressive Match Play Concept
The Match Play Championship will be changed to a progressive format that starts at the Chapter level. Each Chapter would hold an 18-hole qualifier, and the low 32 players would be seeded in a Chapter match play bracket. Matches would be played on a date/time/location agreed upon by the players in the match. The winners of each Chapter bracket will meet in the Section Finals. The Section Finals will be held at a premier facility in late August, with the semi-finals in the morning and finals/consolation match in the afternoon. All players winning a first-round match will receive prize money.
What will be the entry fee?
The current entry fee is $260, and for those not qualifying for match play, there is a $100 refund. This fee structure will remain, but it is the goal for the entry fee to be lower and for those non-qualifiers their net entry fee being less than $100. The financial model is not finalized.
How will matches be scheduled?
Matches will be scheduled by the following policy. This policy is a successful model used by other golf organization.
Scheduling of Rounds. After the match play bracket is published, the following procedures must be followed in scheduling Matches. Failure to comply with any deadline specified in the Scheduling Chart may result in the defaulting player forfeiting the Match in question. Players must communicate by email, so there is a time-stamped record of the communications. No Match may be played after the specified “Play by” date. If a match is unable to be played within the target dates, a written explanation must be submitted to the Section office within one business day after the Match deadline date. Disputes concerning the day to play the Match shall be resolved at the discretion of the Section Tournament Chair, Chapter Tournament Chair, and Executive Director. Potential resolution could be a forfeit or winner determined by lot.
Offering Date. The lower seed shall select three potential dates for a Match and two neutral site options and advise their opponent of those dates by the Offering Date outlined in the Scheduling Chart attached to these Conditions.
Selection Date. The higher seed shall choose one of the three potential dates and preferred neutral site and advise their opponent of the date chosen by the Selection Date outlined in the Scheduling Chart.
Time of Match. All matches unless otherwise agreed upon will begin at 8 am.
Rain Date. On or before the Selection Date, the players shall also establish a Rain Date upon which the Match shall be played and/or completed in the event inclement weather causes the postponement or suspension of the Match. In the event inclement weather prevents the playing of a Match on the selected Rain Date, each player must provide within two business days of the Rain Date to the Chapter Tournament Chair five potential Make-Up dates for the Match to be played. The potential Make-Up dates must be within two weeks of the Rain Date. The Chapter Tournament Chair shall then establish the Make-Up Date. If inclement weather prevents play on the Make-Up Date, the process shall be repeated until the Match is played.
Notification Date. The lower seed shall notify by email the Chapter Tournament Chair of the date selected for the Match, and Rain Date, by the Notification Date outlined in the Scheduling Chart.
Who will handle claims or other disputes?
Claims and Disputes during the Chapter bracket play shall be resolved at the discretion of the Chapter Tournament Chair with consultation of the designated Chapter Coordinator. Claims and Disputes during the Section Finals shall be resolved by the Section Tournament Manager. All appeals shall be determined by the Section Tournament Chair and Executive Director, whose decision is final. Potential resolution could be a forfeit or winner determined by lot.
How will Section Player of the Year Points be allocated?
Section Player of the Year Points will continue to be earned using Category 4. First-round losers are deemed to have placed 32nd. The committee is aware there is a potential problem if a chapter does not have a minimum of 32 players. This is challenge is being reviewed so players can’t earn points without playing a match.
What will the purse be like?
Those winning a first-round match will earn prize money. With increased entries and decreased costs, it is anticipated the purse will be larger the historical average.
How will seeding in the Section Finals be determined?
Section Finals seeding will rotate, so the Chapter winners don’t play the same chapter in the Semi-Finals back to back years. For example, in 2020 Northern v. Southwest and East Central v. West Central. In 2021 Southwest v. East Central and Northern v. West Central. In 2021 Northern v. East Central and West Central v. Southwest.
How will a course be selected for the Section Finals?
There are some incredible courses in each Chapter, so it is important that the finals rotate, so the finals are in a different Chapter each year. For example, sites locations would be Southwest (2020), East Central (2021), Northern (2022) and West Central (2022).
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