Is it acceptable to wear a hoodie on the golf course?

It seemed such a bugbear to some people that the European Tour should perhaps carrying an asterisk alongside the 2020 BMW PGA Championship in the record books.

Tuesday, 13th October 2020, 3:11 pm
Tyrrell Hatton wearing his hoodie and holding the winners trophy at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth at the weekend. Picture: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images
Tyrrell Hatton wearing his hoodie and holding the winners trophy at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth at the weekend. Picture: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images

Yes, that’s the upset Tyrrell Hatton seems to have caused by wearing a hoodie on all four days of his victory at Wentworth last week.

Really? It wasn’t as if the Englishman had caused offence by heading out on the iconic West Course in just his boxers or even a string vest. He was wearing a perfectly-acceptable cosy top to combat the autumn chill that just happened to have a hood.

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I’d noticed Connor Syme, one of Hatton’s stablemates at the Modest! Golf management company, wearing one recently and didn’t blink an eye as it looked smart. As was the case with Hatton each and every day in last week’s Rolex Series event.

Pringle jumpers were favoured by Nick Faldo in his heyday.

I’m not saying that I expect everyone to start wearing one, but, just in case you hadn’t noticed, today’s top young golfers dress a bit differently to the likes of Colin Montgomerie, Nick Faldo and Seve Ballesteros at the same age.

Check out the trousers that Erik Van Rooyen and others are wearing these days. They might not be our cup of tea, but the “traditional look” for playing golf needs to be consigned to the past.

I’m not suggesting that anything goes because there needs to be a certain standard, but hoodies definitely get the thumbs up from me and it will be interesting to see how many youngsters at clubs start sporting that hip Hatton look.

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Erik van Rooyen, right, cuts a dash in his tight-fitting red trousers.

As someone who doesn’t play in many competitions, I still feel nervous stepping on to the first tee with a card and pencil in my hand.

Which made it a strange feeling when that wasn’t the case as I set out in a midweek Stableford event at my home club last Wednesday.

Instead, my head was spinning after I’d been given a run through by one of my playing partners of the Covid-19 card-marking system.

I’m not joking when I say that I actually had no clue initially about what was going on because it’s normally perfectly simple and, well, this sounded very complicated indeed.

You don’t put your own score down in the box for the marker’s score and the marker’s signature is not the name of the person’s card you are marking. See what I mean?

By the time we were finished, I'd just about got my head round it, but then discovered that things are also done differently at the moment when it comes to actually recording the score.

That involved having to download an App, entering the score on that and then taking a photograph of the card and emailing it to the tournament secretary.

If that's the process that is required for competitions to be taking place at the moment, then so be it, but, at the same time, I was ready to go home afterwards and lie down for a bit in a darkened room.

I'll be back there, by the looks of things, when the new World Handicap System is rolled out soon because it entails a handicap index, course handicap and a playing handicap. Oh, my god!

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