Origin of the Sport:

The early form of the game – then known as “gowf” - was created in Scotland in the 1400s and was banned for a while by parliament under King James II as it was deemed a distraction from military training.

The first 13 rules of golf came into being in 1744 and the game started to flourish between 1750-1850 spreading to other parts of the UK and beyond.

The first Open golf championship took place in 1860. The annual event staged in the UK is now one of the four 'majors' of the modern game along with the US Masters, US Open and US PGA.

Golf is set to reappear in the Olympic programme at the 2016 Rio Olympics after a gap of 112 years. The rules of the game are jointly decided by the USGA (United States Golf Association) who oversee the game in the USA and Mexico  and the R&A (Royal and Ancient Golf Club), who oversee the game in more than 100 countries worldwide.

How it Works:

A precision club and ball sport, golf involves playing a series of holes with the aim to fire a ball into a hole (usually named a par three, four or five) with a club in the least number of shots. A standard golf course is played over 18 holes. Each hole must contain a tee area to start the hole and a putting area, within which the hole must lie. Clubs are broadly divided into three types 'the woods' typically used for long range shots and distance, irons for shorter distances. Once on the green, the ball is then struck with a putter.

The two basic forms of the game are strokeplay in which the aim is to score the lowest total by an individual over 18 holes or matchplay in which two players (or two teams) play each hole as a separate contest against each other. The game is won by the player or team that wins more holes than the other.

Format at World Masters Games:

Competition will be run across five age divisions for men and women; 35-44, 45-54, 55-64, 65-74 and 75+. The tournament take place over 54 holes of strokeplay across three courses with an 18-hole final.


The final will be held at the Remuera Golf Club with the other courses used the Muriwai, Akarana and Pakuranga Golf Clubs.

Expected number of participants:720

Kiwi Hero:

Michael Campbell - Born in Hawera in Taranaki, Campbell is the last New Zealand man to win a ‘major’ with his sole success coming when winning the 2005 US Open in Pinehurst by two shots from Tiger Woods. He claimed three other top six placings in Majors and snared seven European tour wins including victory in the £1m World Match Play Championship – the event regarded as the richest prize in golf.

Did You Know?

The term “birdie” typically used to describe a one under par score derives from the early 19th century American slang term 'bird,' meaning anything excellent.

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