Bad Lies

I’ll blame it on jet lag – because I can!

In case you didn’t notice I gave you the wrong date for what came to be known as the “Duel in the Sun” at the Open at Turnberry. It was of course 1977 – and not 1972!

It reminds me of a story where Tommy Bolt was reading the newspaper when he was in the lead of the 1958 US Open. The headline read “46-Year old leads Open’’. He rushed into the press room and asked who wrote the headline. A writer put up his hand and said “I did’’. Tommy said; “I’m not 46 years old,” to which the writer replied; “Sorry Tommy, typographical error”. Tommy said; “Typographical error my arse. That was a perfect 4 and a perfect 6.”

Anyway, the reason I had jet lag is because I spent the last week in Orlando at the PGA Merchandise Show...

What’s not to love – it’s 23-acres of golf, golf and more golf. Over 1,000 exhibitors, with 7,500 golf professionals in attendance and probably the same number in other golf industry people. According to the media documentation, the National Golf Foundation determined golf to be an $84 billion economy in 2016. That’s obviously a huge contribution to the overall economy.

It is now 41 years since I first visited the Show. It was 1978 and I was still playing on Tour.

Obviously the golfing landscape has changed dramatically since then. Then there were at least fifty different golfing brands like Ram, Pinseeker, Cougar, Bullet, Power Bilt and First Flight – but they have all gone. Other than PING and Wilson, all the best known brands are new.

Lynx is making a comeback and has some interesting products, but we probably won’t see it in South Africa in the near future.

Cobra, which started in 1983 is doing really well, but the top 4 are Titleist, PING, Callaway and TaylorMade. Taylormade were not at the show which was very interesting and had questions hanging in the air, like; “Do they have a new strategy to sell their products?”, or “Are they trying to save money?”

For my money, the star of the show was PING, who launched a few great products.

One of the reasons I love the show is that I bump into loads of old friends. I see Pros who used to play on the Sunshine Tour, or those I played with on the PGA Tour and there are loads of South Africans who have emigrated to the US over the years. Many of them are doing really well, like Peter Bakker and Gary Gilchrist, two teachers, who are excellent at what they do, and Mel Sole, who has a very successful golf academy in South Carolina. This year I also bumped into my old friend and World Cup partner, Bobby Cole. I only got to spend a half hour with Bobby, who now teaches golf in Miami, but he looks great and seems very happy with life.

The American golf scene turned a corner a couple of years ago and is now flying. Everyone I spoke to told me how good things were. More people playing golf and spending money. Whether you love him or hate him, Trump seems to be good for golf in the US.

I interviewed some really interesting people at the Show this year, including John Solheim Snr & Jnr, the Chairman and President of PING. The Solheim family founded PING and are still the sole owners of the company.

The R&D people who design golf clubs, shoes and clothing were all fascinating. Their companies are all working 3, 4 and 5 years ahead in an attempt to bring equipment to the market that will help golfers to both enjoy the game more and play better golf!

Over the next few weeks, I'll be giving you the low-down on equipment highlights from the Show and we'll also be producing two programmes to be aired on Supersport. I'll be sure to let you know when they will air! 

When the Ball Hits Back…

Great news for South Africa is that the European Challenge Tour gets under way this week with three new co-sanctioned events in South Africa. The ‘South African Swing’ will take in the Limpopo Championship from 30th January – 2nd February at both Euphoria Golf & Lifestyle Estate and Koro Creek Bushveld Golf Estate; the RAM Cape Town Open from 6th to 9th Feb at Royal Cape Golf Club and King David Mowbray Golf Club’s and the Dimension Data Pro-Am from 13th to 16th Feb at Fancourt.

I just loved this…

Brooks Koepka’s response to Bryson DeChambeau after DeChambeau chirped his physique:
“I don’t think his genetics even make him look good. Did you see the Body Issue? He didn’t have any abs. I have abs.”

Koepka responded by posting this pic on Twitter saying:
“You were right. I’m two short of a six-pack.” (referring to his four majors)

The Denis Hutchinson Tribute Tour with
Dale Hayes

Join the “Voice of Golf” Denis Hutchinson and I, for a Tribute Evening in your area, where we discuss our very long involvement in this wonderful game.

Clubs can contact Paul Adams on 072-333-1886 / if they are interested in hosting an event.

Here are the dates for upcoming “open” events:

Date Contact Person Contact Details
Knysna GC Sat, 1st February David Mack Email
Royal Port Alfred Thurs, 27th February
Corrie van Zyl Email
Erinvale GC Sat, 21st March Blyth Reid
King David Mowbray Wed, 20th May
Cameron Johnston

Around the world

Gaby Lopez won the LPGA’s season-opening Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions with a 30-foot putt for birdie on the seventh playoff hole last Monday. They had to abandon play on Sunday due to darkness after finishing the fifth play-off hole.

Marc Leishman won the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego thanks to a birdie at the last hole. He started the final round four off the lead, but five birdies on the front nine catapulted him in to the lead. His 7-under 65 saw him win by one over Jon Rahm at 15-under 273. Despite having a tough day, Rahm never gave up. He needed an eagle at the last to force a play-off, but could only manage birdie. Rory McIlory needed the win to become world number 1. He had a rocky start but made three birdies on the back nine to stay in it. He tied for 3rd alongside Brandt Snedeker at 12-under.

Lucas Herbert won his maiden European Tour title at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in a play-off with Christiaan Bezuidenhout at the Emirates Golf Club. On a tough final day in wind, sand and rain, both Bezuidenhout and Herbert came from six off the lead, shooting 4-under 68s to tie at 9-under 279. Despite Herbert finding water on the first play-off hole, they both made pars and Herbert won with a birdie on the second play-off hole. Dean Burmester, who was involved in a car accident in his Uber the day before the first round, tied for third at 7-under alongside Adri Arnaus and Tom Lewis. Overnight leader Ashun Wu (who shot a 5-over 77) tied for 6th at 6-under alongside Kurt Kitayama. Louis Oosthuizen tied for 23rd at 2-under

Madelene Sagstrom won her maiden LPGA title at the Gainbridge LPGA at Boca Rio. The overnight leader shot a 2-under 70 to win by one at 17-under 271. Nasa Hatoaka made birdies at the 15th & 16th to take the lead but an all-important birdie at the 17th saw Sagstrom tie. She won when Hatoaka missed her par putt at the last. Danielle Kang finished third at 15-under.

JC Ritchie and Jaco Prinsloo successfully defended their title at the 2020 Gauteng Team Championship hosted by Dainfern. They finished the tournament on 25-under-par 191 after rounds of 61 (betterball) – 68 (foursomes) – 62 (betterball), beating Jaco Ahlers and Vaughn Groenewald by two shots. Deon Germishuys & Ulrich van der Berg; Kyle Barker & David McIntyre and Heinrich Bruiners & Andre Nel tied for third at 22-under.

Amy Boulden from Wales, won the LET Q School – Final Qualifier on the South Course at the Real Golf La Manga Club in Spain. She and the others in the top five - Magdalena Simmermacher; Alison Muirhead; Kim Metraux; Alice Hewson - earned fully exempt LET Cards. Casandra Hall and Nobuhle Dlamini finished in a tie for 8th and Monique Smit finished 20th and have gained category 8a status.

Jared Wolfe won his maiden title at the Korn Ferry Tour’s Bahamas Great Abaco Classic at Baha Mar. He came into the final round with a one-shot lead and in tough wind conditions, shot a 69 to finish at 18-under 270. He won by four over Brandon Harkins. Billy Kennerly, Curtis Thompson and Nick Hardy tied for third at 13-under.

• Amateur Keagan Thomas won the IGT’s Race to Q-School #2 at Modderfontein in wire-to-wire fashion. He finished on 12-under 204 after shooting 64-69-71, winning by three over Quintin Wilsnach. Keaton Slatter and Clayton Mansfield tied for third at 8-under.

Casey Jarvis dominated the Gauteng North Open at Centurion CC. He won by eight shots on 25-under 259 after shooting superb rounds of 69-63-64-63. Ryan van Velzen was second on 17-under and Nikhil Rama was third on 16-under.

• Starting in 2021, the World Golf Hall of Fame have reduced their minimum age for eligibility from 50 to 45. That means that Tiger Woods, who turns 45 in December (and has already checked all the other boxes) would be eligible next year. Other players that are affected and could be up for consideration are Henrik Stenson, Sophie Gustafson, Padraig Harrington and Lee Westwood. 

Who’s up this week?
(Please note that this is the entry list as at Monday & is subject to change)
• PGA TOUR - Waste Management Phoenix Open - Dylan Frittelli; Branden Grace; Charl Schwartzel
• European Tour – Saudi International powered by Softbank Investment Advisors – Ernie Els; Dean Burmester; Haydn Porteous; Brandon Stone; Richard Sterne; Thomas Aiken; Zander Lombard; Erik van Rooyen; Christiaan Bezuidenhout; Justin Walters; Justin Harding.
• Sunshine Ladies Tour – Cape Town Ladies Open - Lee-Anne Pace; Stacy Bregman; Lejan Lewthwaite & Nicole Garcia to name just a few.

By the rules

There are still many questions being asked by golfers and clubs about  “preferred lies”. 

Many clubs think that preferred lies are not allowed under any circumstances but this is not the case.

While preferred lies are discouraged, a club may implement preferred lies if they have good reason to do so. In our country, this could happen quite frequently, especially in some of our outlying areas, or where dry and hot weather conditions play such a big role. So, a club can have preferred lies but it should not appear as a permanent fixture on their scorecard.

Click here to read the officially document regarding this from GolfRSA.

Tour events

Take a look at all the upcoming Tour events around the world.

On Tour with Dale

Dale Hayes Golf appreciates the ongoing support of City Lodge.

Golf Management Campus

Make golf your major at the Golf Management Campus

Is it your dream to…Play on Tour? Manage a golf club? Be a golf director? Be a club Professional? Be a golf course superintendent?

We are starting to recruit students for 2020 for the following courses: -
• 3-year Internationally recognised PGA Diploma Course
• Game improvement programme (part-time or full-time)
• Preparation for a Career as a Tour Player
• Sports Turf Maintenance

We have a host of extremely experienced lecturers and coaches from the guru’s in the golf business, including: Dale Hayes & Dennis Bruyns - PGA Master Professionals; Elsabe Hefer - PGA Top 25 Teacher & Fellow PGA Member; Theo Bezuidenhout Consulting - Sports Psychologists & Dwayne Coetzee - Golf Equipment Technology Specialist.

Contact Joanita Verster for more information or a tour of the facilities on (012) 654-1144 / or visit

The driving range

This month Elsabe Hefer looks at how you can overdo some aspects of your swing.

This week she looks at exaggerated weight shift.

Elsabe Hefer is a Fellow Member of the PGA; a former Gauteng North PGA Teacher of the Year and PGA Top 20 Teacher. She is the Head Teaching Professional at Zwartkop Country Club.

And, to finish off…

The rare hole-in-one, the most perfect fluke ever, it’s the best feeling in golf. Celebrate – get the certificate and have bragging rights forever! For further information and to join, contact Margaret on (012) 654-1144 or click here to send an email.

Silly Season Golf Quotes:
  “If you break 100, watch your golf. If you break 80, watch your business.”  Joey Adams

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RetailTribe: Unit 8, Blaauwklip 1 | Blaauwklip Office Park | R44 | Stellenbosch | South Africa | +27 (0)21 880 269
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