Is this acceptable?

Joined
Jul 24, 2012
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In a pairs competition I wouldn't be rushing over to help them look for a ball that's heading for a fairway on an adjective hole. Theres two of them to watch the flight then go find it.

If they hit it into obvious jungle and I have a line I will wander over and help once I've found my ball.
Absolutely this in the context of a fourball match when my experience is that the expectation that I or my partner will help in a search is very much lower.
 

Orikoru

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The gamesmanship people reference in match play just makes me laugh. Maybe if there were thousands of pounds on the line I could think about playing that way. But my mindset when entering a match is that I play my best golf when I'm happy and relaxed and not thinking about the golf - so I'll just try and have a laugh and a chat with the opponents and create an enjoyable atmosphere. I don't think about the psychology of giving a putt here and not giving one there - I just give the one footers and let them putt the rest. If I was up against someone who was into gamesmanship like this, it wouldn't rattle me, I'd just laugh at them in my head or with my partner at how seriously they're taking it, and keep focussed on being relaxed and enjoying my round. That works better for me than trying to play them at their own game I think.

Gimmes is another thing I don't know why people get annoyed about. If you were going out to play in a medal you'd be expecting to hole eighteen putts, so why not think the same way in a matchplay, and anything that is given is a bonus. If you're annoyed about someone not giving you a breaking two-footer then it's obviously missable and not really a gimme!
 
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This is my first year of playing matches, maybe I've been too influenced by what constitutes a gimmie in the Ryder Cup. Either that, or the general rule of thumb we have in our unofficial winter comps where you give it if it's less than the length of your putter.
Typically it's inside putter grip that's referenced not the whole club.

Depends on quality of player really and where opponent is. I gave a few 2-3ft putts and may be even longer in pairs match other day. Both were 6 handicaps and could clearly putt well. Would see the occasional one but they weren't missing and playing partner was also in relatively close so chances of both missing were small. Just give the putt, have a nice flow to the match and beat them with good scores.

I don't expect anything to be given so not offended if it isn't reciprocated (i'm not a 6 handicap or good putter) and I'd always go help in a search. As someone pointed out, you want to win but it's not exactly big stakes but just meant to be a bit of fun meeting other members.
 

Oddsocks

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This is my first year of playing matches, maybe I've been too influenced by what constitutes a gimmie in the Ryder Cup. Either that, or the general rule of thumb we have in our unofficial winter comps where you give it if it's less than the length of your putter.
There are certain putts on my course where when the greens are ironed you wouldn’t give a putter grip length, a downhill slider of 18” could give you a 6-8ft putt back if missed. This could seriously influence a match as a given putt can easily swing into a three putt.

Assume you have to and will be made to putt every shot, on nights where you skip out for 9 and the course is quite find these type of putts and rattle them in over and over. You’ll soon love those that others tremble over which makes you deadly in matchplay.
 

BiMGuy

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The gamesmanship people reference in match play just makes me laugh. Maybe if there were thousands of pounds on the line I could think about playing that way. But my mindset when entering a match is that I play my best golf when I'm happy and relaxed and not thinking about the golf - so I'll just try and have a laugh and a chat with the opponents and create an enjoyable atmosphere. I don't think about the psychology of giving a putt here and not giving one there - I just give the one footers and let them putt the rest. If I was up against someone who was into gamesmanship like this, it wouldn't rattle me, I'd just laugh at them in my head or with my partner at how seriously they're taking it, and keep focussed on being relaxed and enjoying my round. That works better for me than trying to play them at their own game I think.

Gimmes is another thing I don't know why people get annoyed about. If you were going out to play in a medal you'd be expecting to hole eighteen putts, so why not think the same way in a matchplay, and anything that is given is a bonus. If you're annoyed about someone not giving you a breaking two-footer then it's obviously missable and not really a gimme!
I love the mind games of competitive match play. But, I won’t start anything serious other than the odd cheeky gimmie or not.

In the past I played a lot of league games for my old club and faced all sorts of people. Some of them took it very very seriously and would try every trick in the book. These were usually the people that folded like a cheap suit when you played their games back to them.

The worst was a guy from a course near Leeds. Such was the guys reputation one of the members there warned me about him and actually followed us round to keep an eye on him. And to be fair, the guy was a complete 🔔 end.

He stood on my ball once, walked on my line repeatedly, didn’t give putts that were an inch away, gave me a wrong ruling on what to do in an area where some new trees planted, tried to play out of turn. Pretty much every match play mind trick in the book.
Anyway, I beat him round his own track and he wasn’t happy.

The following week were were at home and I had to play the same guy.

On the first tee we shook hands and I told him. I’m not playing gimmies, local rules and out of bounds are noted on the card and we’ll speak only to confirm scores and rules.

His face was a picture and it clearly rattled him. He was dispatched in reasonably short order. It was one of the more enjoyable rounds of match play as he kept looking at me for putts and tried a couple of times to strike up conversation.

I hope he learned that not everyone will fall for his silly games and you can have a good competitive game without being a 🔔
 

Slab

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I was gonna start a separate thread but it might as well go here since we're branching in that direction now:

Most obvious gamesmanship I received was;
Match all square standing on 18th tee and after popping the tee/ball down to hit driver I looked & the ball was very close if not a fraction in front of the markers (I'm pretty fastidious about it & always check)
I decided to move it back a couple of inches just to make certain and seeing me do it the fella says; Glad you spotted it, you've been in front of the markers all day but I let it go

:sneaky:
 
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I was gonna start a separate thread but it might as well go here since we're branching in that direction now:

Most obvious gamesmanship I received was;
Match all square standing on 18th tee and after popping the tee/ball down to hit driver I looked & the ball was very close if not a fraction in front of the markers (I'm pretty fastidious about it & always check)
I decided to move it back a couple of inches just to make certain and seeing me do it the fella says; Glad you spotted it, you've been in front of the markers all day but I let it go

:sneaky:
Ive got 'best rebuttal'

2nd hole and lifelong gamesmanship protaganist is up against a tree on the edge of the rough.

Shouts across, "There's rabbit scrapings, can you come and check so I can drop"

Rebutter shouts back from 40 yards away "You know the rules, why dont you just throw it out onto the fairway"

No relief was taken. Nor asked for again... gamesmanship player lost next 3 holes while notably embarrassed infont of his caddy
 

patricks148

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Not I my book, you should help any oppo look for their ball
Had a few like this over the years, ones attitude even promted to get a stop watch as he'd not help look for yours then spend ten mins on his own with you helping. Gimmies a bit different, if I'm giving you a help of shots I'm only giving stone dead putts😉
 

timd77

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Ive got 'best rebuttal'

2nd hole and lifelong gamesmanship protaganist is up against a tree on the edge of the rough.

Shouts across, "There's rabbit scrapings, can you come and check so I can drop"

Rebutter shouts back from 40 yards away "You know the rules, why dont you just throw it out onto the fairway"

No relief was taken. Nor asked for again... gamesmanship player lost next 3 holes while notably embarrassed infont of his caddy
As a fairly newcomer to matchplay comps, what’s this about? Is it to do with relief from scrapings not being available if there’s another factor hindering their swing, ie, ball sat on a root etc?
 
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had an intresting one in a pairs match 4BBB a few weeks ago, played against some top lads , really chatty and we've played with them before. there was only 5 shots diffrence between the 4 of us and it was nip and tuck for 11 holes , then there is a short par 3 but the green is very slopey.
we had one ball on the green they had 2 off but the opposition played a great chip over a bunker to within 3ft.... but it left him a snakey downhiller, he looked up and i described it as slightly outside the circle of friendship, I 2 stabbed for par and he missed the putt and lost the hole.
Poor chaps head went big time for the following 3 holes and us winning all of them and the match.
match play is a funny old game.
Also im in the always look for PP's balls even if its to chuckle when their behind a tree
 
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As a fairly newcomer to matchplay comps, what’s this about? Is it to do with relief from scrapings not being available if there’s another factor hindering their swing, ie, ball sat on a root etc?
It was that the scrapings (if there even were any) were in no way impeding his shot and he was looking to in effect bully his opponent into allowing him a drop away from the tree...
 

sunshine

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Whatever they dish out...dish it back to them..
Giving 3 footers is a tad generous in my eyes but I'd always help look for a ball, even if I'm not trying too hard;)
I find people who are generous with gimmes are usually poor putters. You can put them under pressure by making them hole a short one.
 
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Jan 28, 2020
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I love matchplay, particularly the psychology around gimmies.

As a general rule I'll give everything on the front nine (as long as the match is pretty close), before being stingy on the back. I'm a fan of the 'good good' and seldom refuse one. On one particular occasion, playing our 5th we were both equidistant, about 5 feet and I offered the good good, which was refused... I told him he could have his anyway, strolled up and knocked mine in for the half. I had a bit of a bounce to the next tee.. whereas his head had gone... and he knocked his tee shot OB. Whenever I see him he still mentions it...
 

saving_par

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I love matchplay, particularly the psychology around gimmies.

As a general rule I'll give everything on the front nine (as long as the match is pretty close), before being stingy on the back. I'm a fan of the 'good good' and seldom refuse one. On one particular occasion, playing our 5th we were both equidistant, about 5 feet and I offered the good good, which was refused... I told him he could have his anyway, strolled up and knocked mine in for the half. I had a bit of a bounce to the next tee.. whereas his head had gone... and he knocked his tee shot OB. Whenever I see him he still mentions it...
I really don't understand the psychology of gimmies. If I think you might miss you're putting it, likewise if it's stone dead I'll tell you to pick it up.

Poor golfer who loses the plot when someone asks to see the putt in. You should have the mindset of been asked to hole everything just like you have to do in medal play.
 
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I really don't understand the psychology of gimmies. If I think you might miss you're putting it, likewise if it's stone dead I'll tell you to pick it up.

Poor golfer who loses the plot when someone asks to see the putt in. You should have the mindset of been asked to hole everything just like you have to do in medal play.
You definitely need that mindset. However, matchplay isn't medal play. You aren't holing out on every green and getting into a routine, in foursomes especially, you can go 10 holes without needing to hole out! A missed putt in a medal round affects only one person, in a match it affects two or four.
 

saving_par

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You definitely need that mindset. However, matchplay isn't medal play. You aren't holing out on every green and getting into a routine, in foursomes especially, you can go 10 holes without needing to hole out! A missed putt in a medal round affects only one person, in a match it affects two or four.
I totally understand that, just don't understand the mentality that some folk don't expect to be made to hole out and freak out when asked to do so.

If you haven't hit a putt for a few holes then you should be extra ready to be asked to hole out.
 
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I totally understand that, just don't understand the mentality that some folk don't expect to be made to hole out and freak out when asked to do so.
Me neither. To be fair my point wasn't about someone freaking out about not being given a putt, more along the lines of getting a psychological upper hand on your opponent. Personally, I find it difficult when I'm playing someone who is slow and deliberate. No matter how hard I try, I'm always thinking "get a ******* move on", worrying about holding people up!
 
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