The R&A - Working for Golf
Submitting a Score
Handicapping
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4.1
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Rule 3
Rule 5

Principle of the Rule: 

Rule 4 covers the process for the submission of acceptable scores for handicap purposes, both to obtain an initial Handicap Index and to maintain an established Handicap Index.

Timely submission of scores by a player, or anyone else responsible or authorized to submit scores on their behalf, allows for responsive updates and provides a real-time measure of the player’s golfing ability.

This Rule also outlines the information that players are required to submit for acceptable scores and how these scores can be verified.

4
Submitting a Score

 

4.1
Information Required for Scoring Record
  1. A score posted into the player’s scoring record must be:
    • An acceptable score (see Rule 2.1), and
    • Recorded in the correct chronological order, even if the score is submitted on a day later than the date the round was played.
  2. A score should be posted to the player’s scoring record in the form prescribed by the Authorized Association. This may be in the form of hole-by-hole scores (strongly recommended), an adjusted gross score or Stableford points.
  3. Upon submission of a score, a player must ensure that the following information is provided for inclusion in their scoring record:
    • Date of the round played,
    • Course Rating and Slope Rating for the set of tees played, and
    • Where applicable, the par and stroke index of each hole.

      This information is generally contained on the scorecard.

  4. The Handicap Committee should ensure a submitted score is posted to a player’s scoring record as soon as possible.
  5. A score submitted on a day after the round was played should also include the playing conditions calculation (See Rule 5.6), in addition to the information required under (iii) above.

Scores submitted by a player to obtain an initial Handicap Index must be submitted as either hole-by-hole scores, 9-hole or 18-hole adjusted gross scores or both – depending on the choices made by the National Association. 

4.2
Eligibility to Submit a Score

An acceptable score must be submitted by the player, the Handicap Committee, the Committee in charge of the Competition or by anyone else authorized by the player.

4.3
Time Frame for Submitting a Score

A player should submit their score as soon as possible on the day of play, after competition of their round, and before midnight (local time).

If a player does not submit their score on the day of play:

  • Their Handicap Index will not be updated in time for the next day (see Rule 5.4), and
  • Their score will not be included in the daily playing conditions calculation (PCC) (see Rule 5.6).

When a score is posted to the player’s scoring record after the day of play and the PCC for the day the round was played has already been performed, the PCC adjustment should still be applied to the player’s Score Differential calculation even though the player’s score was not included in the PCC.

If a score is submitted out of sequence:

  • The score should be added to the player’s scoring record in the correct chronological order.
  • The published PCC adjustment for the golf course played, on the day the round was played, should be applied to the Score Differential calculation.
  • The player’s Handicap Index should be recalculated.

Note: The Handicap Committee should investigate any repeated occurrence of a player failing to submit a score in a timely manner (see Rule 7.1b).

If there is no evidence that the player has acted for the purpose of gaining an unfair advantage, all scores submitted in the intervening period should stand for handicap purposes.

4.4
Certification of a Score

A score submitted for handicap purposes must be certified in accordance with the procedures set down by the National Association.

4.5
Number of Scores Required for Initial Handicap Index

To obtain an initial Handicap Index, a player must submit acceptable scores from a minimum number of holes, as determined by their National Association – not exceeding 54 holes.