Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Professional Look to PGA's Initiative

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Professional Look to PGA's Initiative

Article excerpt

Byline: Tim Taylor

IS the golf professional at your club the greatest thing since sliced bread? Or do you wonder how he or she ever got the job? The Professional Golfers' Association have taken steps to make the selection process easier for clubs by issuing an industry guide which describes their education programme and spells out membership categories.

Having been a playing member of five golf clubs in three counties over the 35 years I have been playing the game - and having dealt with hundreds of PGA golf professionals in the course of writing about golf - I can offer a general personal opinion that club professionals can be a mixed bag.

The ones I have encountered on more than an occasional basis range from a genial genius in John Harrison at Matfen Hall to a character from the 1980s who was little more than the equivalent of a one-eyed man becoming king in the land of the blind.

A chancer, he got away with ineptness for a long while because (a) he sucked up to what was a hapless committee and (b) most club members play for enjoyment at weekends off mid to long handicaps, so many of them have few, if any, meaningful dealings or conversations with golf pros.

Even at this distance of time and place, our learned friends would frown upon publication of his name.

I may be digressing here, although only slightly because the PGA's newlyissued guide to hiring the best standard of professional available can be downloaded by typing and the words industry guide into your computer's search engine.

This is part of a strategy to provide the golf industry with information about the wide range of skill levels possessed by modern PGA professionals. David Colclough, PGA head of education, said: "This guide includes critical pieces of information employers, golf club committee members and members of the golf industry might need to know when seeking to better understand what differentiates one PGA Professional from another, particularly when needing to fill new positions. …

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